KAMPALA – Opposition leader Dr Kizza Besigye has asked the government to go beyond giving coronavirus messages and provide essential commodities to the citizens.
According to Dr Besigye, while the messages being spread are very good, they should be accompanied by action.
“This war will need to be fought on four fronts; Deal with the spread. The messages are being spread but there is no action. This particular government is reputed to provide soap during elections. This is the time for them to do so. We need to do more than just messaging. We need to make available what is communicated in the directives. Make essential commodities available,” he said on Monday, March 23, 2020, while appearing on NBS TV.
“To all Ugandans, you are aware what this Government is and what they can or can’t bother to do. I call upon you to help each other. This is not survival for the fittest. If you don’t help your neighbour, he or she will catch the disease and spread it to you,” he added.
The four-time presidential candidate said while some people have accused opposition leaders of politicizing the coronavirus, he said it is the ruling NRM government that fronts politics as the centre of everything.
“I have heard people say we are politicizing corona, did you know that disease is politics? That’s why politics decides who gets medicine and who doesn’t get it. Politicians are determining which treatment u get and which hospital u go to. Our health sector has been for long underfunded. Health should be taking at least 15% of our budget but as of now, it not even 4%,” Dr Besigye said.
“We have a Member of Parliament who has finished S.6 and he earns more than 20m sh. But a medical Doctor who spends a minimum of 6 years in university, earns only 1m sh. What is that? Isn’t it politics? You can stop us from talking about this politics and we will perish,” He added.
The leader of the self-styled People’s Government also said the civil society has shunned the coronavirus fight.
“I have not yet seen the involvement of the civil society and the public sector in this fight. There is a problem of coordination, especially at the district level. We need clear protocols which are not yet there,” he said.
“The preparedness can be examined from what you do. The first and critical thing is to have effective coordination. An attack must be looked at two levels, the individual response and the community response. At the community level, there must be effective coordination, command and control. You have strategic planning connected to the regional, district and health facilities. I have been checking on this over the last couple of days and the report is not encouraging,” he added.