Opinion
Give Musisi total support
Publish Date: Oct 07, 2012
.
  • mail
  • img

By Prof. Semakula Kiwanuka

I write to thank President Museveni for standing firm with Musisi in her efforts not only to beautify but also to bring order and sanity to the capital city. 

It is a herculean and risky task because of the huge vested and powerful interests.

Now that the Centenary Park has become a contentious issue, let me give a background to its origins and the intentions of those of us who started it.

As one of the people who created the Centenary Park I am saddened because the Park has been turned into a built up area, totally contrary to the intentions of those of us who set it up. 

It was in the early days of the NRM government when Christopher Yiga was Chairman (Mayor) of KCC and I was Chairman of Makindye Division and, therefore, a councillor of KCC. 

The then Council had many upright and patriotic Ugandans such as the late Justice Mulenga (Nakawa), the late James Sinabulya (Kampala Central) etc.

At that time, the newly rehabilitated Sheraton Hotel had cordoned off Kampala City Park. That was one of the challenges we faced as councillors because the Capital City had been deprived of the only green environment of reasonable size where Ugandans could stroll and relax with their families. 

Some of us gave examples of great cities like London whose beauty and fame are enhanced by their numerous parks such as Hyde Park, the Green Park, Kensington Gardens, St. James’s Park etc.

That was the origin of the decision to create the Centenary Park. It was never our intention that the Centenary Park would be converted into a built up area. 

In pursuance of creating a green environment, we also had plans to landscape the banks of Nakivubo River. That never happened because there came a new breed of mayors and councillors for whom the idea of a beautiful city with beautiful parks was totally alien. 

Then came the mad days of CHOGM when an unholy alliance of Lands, Local Government, and KCC decided to sell whatever they could lay their hands on.

I remember making a spirited pro-green, pro-park speech in an important forum when a distinguished lady tabled the sale of City Square. I did not even know who the purchaser was until last year 2011.

Beautiful cities are magnets to investors

Worldwide, beautiful cities with world class infrastructures are magnets to investors and tourists. 

At onetime some of us had dreams and ambitions to make Kampala a regional hub with headquarters of international corporations, banks, United Nations Agencies etc. 

Because their presence gives the host cities and host countries international clout and status.

Besides, they have huge pockets and are big money spenders all of which boosts national economics.

KCCA

What Jennifer Musisi is trying to do is to recapture what has been lost. Needless to say Ugandans want and deserve a beautiful city.

The creation of KCCA headed by a non-political Executive Director with a powerful mandate was intended not only to reduce the politicisation and the kavuyo in the management of the city.

It was also intended to restore order and sanity and to embark on Kampala’s rehabilitation. 

My appeal, therefore, which is shared by many Ugandans is to support Musisi, not only to beautify the city but also to reclaim the whole of Centenary Park to its original status as a complete green environment for people to stroll, sit and enjoy their city. 

Let us not support Musisi selectively. When she stood up to the mighty and powerful who had illegally acquired KCC’s prestigious buildings she was applauded.

Similarly those who obtained Centenary Park and other contracts through influence peddling and abuse of office to turn the park into a built up area should not be protected to perpetuate the vandalisation of a public good.

The late Nobel Lauriet Mathai Wangari stood up against the mighty and powerful in Kenya to protect Nairobi city’s Uhuru Park. 

I appeal to Ugandans to support Jennifer to restore the beauty of Kampala and to bring chaos to an end.

The writer is Uganda’s ambassador to the United Arab Emirates

The statements, comments, or opinions expressed through the use of New Vision Online are those of their respective authors, who are solely responsible for them, and do not necessarily represent the views held by the staff and management of New Vision Online.

New Vision Online reserves the right to moderate, publish or delete a post without warning or consultation with the author.Find out why we moderate comments. For any questions please contact digital@newvision.co.ug

  • mail
  • img
blog comments powered by Disqus
Also In This Section
Congratulatory message from the president of the Republic of Turkey
On Wednesday, October 29, Turkey clebrated its 91st Anniversary of the proclamation of the Republic of Turkey....
Namugongo Museum: Uganda’s architecture too needs Martyrs
For their refusal to renounce Christianity, thirty-two young men of the Catholic and Anglican faiths were – on the orders of Kabaka Mwanga II of Buganda – burned to death on June 3, 1886 at Namugongo ....
Rank stupidity?
Blaise Cronin is Professor Emeritus of Information Science at Indiana University Bloomington, and Honorary Professor at City University London....
Uganda’s traffic woes
When you want to know that Uganda’s traffic system is dead, try walking through the ZEBRA Crossing....
The years of living tactically
We have been living in an illusion. For years, the world has believed that the transition from a unipolar to a multipolar order would be peaceful, orderly, and steady, with new players like China, Brazil, and Turkey adapting to the existing multilateral framework in a natural, harmonious way. How w...
Mineral certification: The genesis and steps Uganda ought to remember
On December 15, 2010, Uganda endorsed the ICGLR Lusaka Declaration adopting six tools to fight Illegal exploitation of natural resources in the Great Lakes Region....
Should the absence of bride price prevent couples from wedding?
Yes
No
Can't Say
follow us
subscribe to our news letter