Wednesday 25 February 2015

Political Leaders have not provided better services for the last four years they have been in leadership.

On 22nd February 2015, members of Hakibale advocacy forum Mr. Atuhaire John and Mwanguhya Joseph together with members of PRIFODE from Mugusu Sub county panelists appeared on Better FM to  share and comment  about  what leaders have done in terms of improving and providing  better  services for the last four years they have been in leadership.

Leader of PRIFODE monitoring the water source in Magunga before presenting the issue on Radio
“Our leaders evidently began well in the first year of being in power, they tried to provide Mugusu Sub county with improved roads, piped water, well equipped health centers and improved sanitation among others, however this was done for a short while given that, when they occupied their political offices they became shortsightedness and stopped, lobbying, advocating and providing people of Mugusu better and improved services that could improve their well being and livelihoods". Said  Latifah member of PRIFODE in  Mugusu Sub-county, Kabarole District,
Latifah further noted that, immediately after elections, the sub county headquarters of Mugusu were constructed simultaneously with community hall and the local council 111 provided support among leaders who were very active and cooperated with the local citizens to deliver services.

"Political leaders do not want to give accountability on radio and during the accountability meetings organized by the forums at the sub county level, once a leader is asked for the accountability of  how much the road  was constructed,  or a health center or source of water the leader always  feels offended towards the opposition  members and great enemy to the ruling party but “ it’s our duty to ask for the accountability among leaders and that is why we still have poorly and uncoordinated work done and a lot of money spent on undertaking it”. Said Atuhaire John from Hakibale, Kabarole District.  

“Political leaders are very interesting, and very hard to understand, for the 4 years they have been in power, they  have failed to provide  at-least 30% of improved services they pledged to provide during campaigns. Surprisingly we are now seeing these leaders come on ground to meet people because elections  are to begin next, we wonder which kind of  leaders we sent to represent us”. Said Salongo from Mugusu Sub County, Kabarole District.

Salongo added  that Mugusu  market is one of the biggest market in the whole of the western Region  and now the most filthiest place with very dirty toilets,  a lot of garbage , meat sold openly in a dirty places with no water source around  and what hurt us is  leaders are just watching and the garbage dump  is just next to the office of LC111 of Mugusu sub county, we are scared that anything can happen  and  there can be cholera  outbreak if leaders just  ignore the situation. 

During the talkshow  30 minutes were given to the callers and over 20 people  called in from different districts, the callers  were not happy of the services they have  in their respective sub counties.  

"Mugusu sub county  has  no safe and clean  water,  members of PRIFODE  lobbied  for water  in 2014 and water was provided and extended to Maguga  village but due to shoddy work that was done this water did not last for long and the taps were broken. More still Mugusu health center 111 has no water and leaders are aware about the situation". Said  George a caller from Mugusu sub county Kabarole District.

The live radio discussion is supported by Toro Development Network (ToroDev) in partnership arrangement with SIDA, Spider, NED,, CIPESA, DRT, ICT4Dem, and Better  FM,

Thursday 19 February 2015

Improving performance in USE schools

Madam Basemera Nesta a professional teacher from Kabarole District and Mugisha Willy the director of Rwimi Parent’s School, appeared on the ToroDev supported live radio discussion on Hits FM called Orukurato Forum on Saturday, 24th January 2014 and discussed a topic about how performance can be improved in USE  schools.
“A teacher is supposed to play a fundamental role of being a change agent of causing a positive change towards enhancing a learner’s performance to the thresholds. Therefore, a teacher who is to change a learner he/she must be a trained professional, he must understand key concepts involved in teaching, and able to apprehend issues in dynamic ways, he should be a facilitator, a mentor. Among  others. Therefore however, teachers needs also to be motivated in terms of salaries being paid on time, lunch provision, shelter among others that will enable them to provide a comprehensive knowledge among learners. “This will also enhance the performance of our children in both primary and secondary schools”. As noted by Madam Basemera Nesta a professional teacher .

nevertheless,  Nesta suggests that,  parents should prepare their kids well before they go to school, they should feed them on an appropriate good diet, talk to them, tell them how important is to go school to attain school and motivate them especially the primary schools children this will help them concentrate  and improve their performance.

However also, the parents have a role to play especially supporting the performance of their children. Every parent must sit down and plan with his/ her children before sending them to school for their studies. These further involved purchasing in time the entire school requirements and also attend the school meetings whenever they are called to do so, this will help the school management to plan with parents.
The parents should mentor their children, pack enough food and clean water for them, get some time and visit them, create a good rapport with the child and the class teacher this will motivate the child hence improving in his or her performance". As reported by Mr. Mugisha Willy the director of Rwimi Parent’s School.
Further still, the constant supervision of government schools should be emphasized by the ministry of education especially if the children performance is to be to the thresholds among government schools, more still, schools should bring back the law of forcing parents to pack food and water for their children among different stakeholders that are not limited to NGOs, donor community among others to come up on board and support the government in improving the education sector in Government schools”. as noted by Mr Rwamuhumbu Davis local citizen from Kabarole District.

Bashil a caller from Mbarara commented that private schools perform well because they have good supervision from their top leaders which is far different from the Government schools; Teachers are not always supervised to mentor and motivate them hence affecting the performance of the children.
The above issues were shared during the live radio discussion on Hits FM, Saturday, 26th January 2015 where 15 people called in during the talk show to share their issues relating to the improving performance in schools. Callers participated from among the 7 political districts that from Rwenzori Sub Region and other neighboring districts of western Uganda.

The live radio discussion which was moderated by Mr. Kasigazi Williams Donanto is supported by Toro Development Network (ToroDev) in partnership with SIDA, Spider, NED,, CIPESA, DRT, ICT4Dem,  and Hits FM,

ToroDev attained membership with CSBAG in January 2015.

ToroDev attained membership with  CSBAG in January 2015. The partnership arrangement has enhanced ToroDev to  participate in National Budget Analysis, Advocacy& Lobbying Trainings organized by  a Civil Society Budget Advocacy Group (CSBAG).

After a series of engagements and participation in CSBAG activities on national budget advocacy to benefit ordinary  local citizens in Uganda, ToroDev was formally admitted to the national group in August 2014. One of the key advocacy activities that ToroDev has participated in together with CSBAG members, was the “campaign against taxation of agricultural/agribusiness inputs in Uganda”, as proposed by the Ministry of Finance, Planning & Economic Development in Uganda during the 2014/2015 National Budget proposals to the Ugandan Parliament.

ToroDev and other CSBAG members combined forces and efforts to collect at least 1 million signatures of farmers throughout Uganda to petition the Ugandan Parliament to reject the passing of the taxation proposal made by the Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development earlier in June 2014. Indeed, it was celebration amongst Ugandan farmers and CSBAG members countrywide, when Parliament eventually supported the local farmers and heeded to their plea of rejecting the proposed taxation of agricultural/ inputs in Uganda. This was achieved in September 2014.
Meanwhile, in January 2015, ToroDev staff participated the “Budget Analysis & Advocacy & Lobbying” training organized by the CSBAG secretariat in Kampala, Uganda. Key models of the training included; Contextualization of the Budget Policies in Uganda, Introduction to People –Centered Budgeting, Identifying Community Needs & Linking them to Budgets, Sector Financing, Budget Analysis, Budget Tracking (Monitoring) & Accountability and Advocacy & Campaign.

Partners of CSBAG  attending training  in Kampala - Uganda in January 2015. ption

In 2015, ToroDev will actualize this skill and also orient her collaborating Citizens’ Advocacy Forum members spread in seven districts of the Rwenzori sub-region, western Uganda.

Tuesday 17 February 2015

Acquiring Land in Uganda

On  14th/ Feb 2015  representatives from Land Department Kabarole District were hosted live on Hits Fm to comment, discuss and share issues related to land , the Panelists included Kugonza Simon Peter Surveyor officer and Mr Alinda Peter Senior land managing Officer both from Kabarole District.  some of the key issues they discussed included  during the live talkshow included: Do you think Ugandan know the right processes of acquiring and buying a land in Uganda? Do you know why and when you should survey your land? Do you know the land title deeds in Uganda?etc

How a Ugandan can acquire land?

"According to the Uganda Law, Land is recognized in one way or the other and "Land belongs to people" but this phase does not mean that every land you see is your land meaning that ,some land is owned by the culture leaders, some land is  for the community, there is Mile land , Government land , forest land etc, so before anyone acquire land he should first have clear information about the type of land he/she wants to acquire and who owns the land. This should be the first step and other steps will follow, like surveying, registering and getting a title". Said Kugonza Simon Peter Kabarole district Surveyor during the talkshow

 Simon Peter adds a licensed surveyor then must visit the property to establish the boundaries. Depending on size and location, this can take up to three days. When this has been done, the transfer forms is submitted to the Land Office to receive consent to transfer.

How to acquire a land title and why people are encouraged to have  land titles for their land?

"The process of getting a land title is not very long and everyone can get a title for his or her land, first step is after acquiring the land, the owner must get in touch with the registered surveying company, where the company will approach the lands board and get instructions to survey the land, measuring the land , putting the land boundaries and provide the lands department with a report, then report will be submitted to Kampala for approval and copies will be kept for future reference and the company will be told what to do next .Once you get a land title, of your land you can use it to get a loan, for security purpose of your land no one can take it away by force, for future reference etc". Said Mr Alinde Peter Senior land managing Officer both from Kabarole District.

Alinda adds the 1995 Constitution grants land ownership rights solely to citizens of Uganda. Foreigners cannot own land freehold.Foreign investors, individual or corporate, cannot acquire land for the purpose of crop or animal production. Foreigners can either rent/lease from citizens or from the Government.

During the 2 hour live radio program, over 15listeners participated through call-ins, SMS, online for instance William  caller from Kabarole called in the radio program explaining that he has tried to acquire a land title  and it has taken him months to get it.
The live radio discussion which was moderated by Mr. Kasigazi Williams Donanto is supported by Toro Development Network (ToroDev) in partnership with SIDA, Spider, NED,, CIPESA, DRT, ICT4Dem, Hits FM,

ToroDev M&E team Continues encouraging and engaging leaders of the 15 advocacy Forums

Some of the leaders of advocacy forums
The  15 advocacy forums have been formed by the 120 rural monitors  trained by ToroDev in online advocacy, monitoring service delivery using online social media/ICT tools like Ushahidi platform for online documentation, visualization and mapping. The Advocacy Forums also use FM Radio Broadcasting as an ICT tool for “convergence or hub” since it is the most accessed media channel in the rural areas of the Rwenzori Region.

"During the physical and Skype  meetings and discussions ToroDev M&E team encourages  the leaders of the  15 advocacy forums  to embark on advocacy activities-monitoring service delivery, demanding accountability from local leaders and ensuring the participation of the marginalized groups such as women and youth.  The team also tasks forum members to implement ratio of 40% as women, 40% youth and 20% adults in our forum memberships and additional information on social accountability" Said Amanya Sheila M&E officer ToroDev.

Sheila adds that  as a team  we encourage and support citizen-citizen engagements/deliberations to assess priority service delivery and public accountability advocacy at sub-county levels in 7 district of Rwenzori regions, through the existing 15 Advocacy Forums and also through daily facebook discussion with Forums that have computers connected with Internet  and monthly phone calls the team tries  to verify whether the 15  forums are still active in monitoring services and advocating for better services, whether they  conduct  monthly accountability meetings, whether they invite leaders for accountability meetings, whether youths  and  women attend  their meeting ( and the number of youth and women), whether they discuss issues  related to public  accountability etc.

“We are always checked through phone- calls at-least twice a month by the team from ToroDev encouraging the leaders of the forums to continue using both physical meetings and ICT tools to advocate for improved service delivery and share the issues with the team both online and write a  report which is submitted at ToroDev Offices every month, this has kept us active in doing our work”. Said Muhindo Ezra,the leader of Katebwa Advocacy Forum, Kabarole District. 

"As members of the advocacy forums we are always encouraged by ToroDev through phone calls, Skype, Face book discussions and physical meeting to keep using online/virtual platform for documentation and advocacy on people’s demands for improved service delivery in the seven districts of the Rwenzori region and participate on the Radio talk shows”. Said Rwaheru Gilbert the leader of Kichwamba people’and development Forum Kabarole  District.

As way of motivating, encouraging, strengthening and empowering the Advocacy forums and rural monitors, ToroDev’ M&E team  attends the monthly meetings organized by the advocacy forums  at the sub-county level, also twice in a month  the leaders of the forums are given a call t to check on the progress of their work, holds Skype meetings with leaders who were given Laptops, this is done  to assess the strengths, performance and weakness of the rural advocacy forums and rural monitors.

Local Citizens comment on the state of Service Delivery in the Rwenzori Region

Leaders  of Katooke people’ forum Mr. Muzoora  Godwin and Mr.  Tugume Joseph and also the Leader of PRIFODE Mr.  Mukwano Ssenyojo of  Mugusu Sub county  appeared  live on Better FM  for radio discussion  on Sunday, 15th February 2015 and discussed a topic  "Are Ugandans in the Rwenzori Region enjoying better services?  If no Why"
"Mwenge north is one of the county that has not benefited from the Leaders we voted to go and represent us at the parliament and district level, for example in Katooke town council we have tractors to collect garbage, but they are just packed and garbage is everywhere in the whole town council, secondly people of Kahanda, Bufunjo, Kiswange and other villages are crying of lack of clean water, Katooke Health Center 111 does not have enough drugs and most patients now are only given Paracetamol. We are suffering in terms of having unimproved services because leaders during campaigns confuse and lie to voters promising them to provide services but they don't provide any as soon as they win the votes, voters are always forgotten." Said Tugume Joseph From Katooke sub-county Kyenjojo district  during the Listeners forum talkshow live on Better FM.

Politicians know how to use sweet words during campaigns and on radio and make voters very excited which attracts voters to end up voting them. The truth is our leaders don't have a heart to serve the voters and don't have the capacity to lobby for better and improved services in Kyenjojo sub-county that is why we have many roads with potholes, we never got any first grade in Senior Four results in Katooke sub county, no clean and piped water etc". Said Muzoora Godwin from Katooke sub-county Kyenjojo district.
The type of Water people of  Kahanda  Kyenjojo collect for their domestic Use.
"We voted because we wanted our leaders to go in office and represent us, lobby for us and provide us with better services as much as they can, but somehow some local citizens who voted have never taken any step to go back and ask the leaders they voted into power about services they promised to do for them during the campaigns. Local citizens just complain from their homes and bars without approaching the leader and they go ahead and laugh at us whenever we try to approach leaders demanding them for better services. This is one of the reasons as to why we still have poor services in most sectors and in most sub-counties of the Rwenzroi region".Said Mukwano Ssenyojo, from Mugusu Sub-county.
 "Local Citizens of the Rwenzori  Region are not enjoying the best services because they have been lied by politicians who speak sweet words and have convincing tongues, used during campaigns to deceive voters”. Said  Kamara a caller from  Bugaki, Kyenjojo District.

During the live radio discussion over 20 local citizens called in to give in their comments, issues, ideas on the topic of discussion and shared the nature of poor services they have in most sub-counties and districts of the Rwenzori Region.
The live radio discussions are supported by SIDA/CIPESA , ICT4Dem and NED  in Partnership with ToroDev

Tuesday 10 February 2015

People' Rights and forum for development receive an out-cry from local citizens about insecurity in Mugusu Sub county

 Some of the members of People' Rights and forum for development 
Members of People' Rights and forum for development Kabarole District  have received an out cry from the local citizens  about the issue of insecurity in the sub county of Mugusu Kabarole District . 

"We have received many business people complaining being stolen and robbed of their goods from their shops at night, and local citizens who reported the case at  Mugusu police station took a step and asked the police officers whether they are always on night duty when ever their shops are broken and goods robbed , local citizens wondered if the police officers have a hand in  doing this but as a forum we  are now working closely with the police investing  the issue and soon we shall find out who does this." Said   Mr  Mukwano Ssenyonjo leader of the Forum.
 Mukwano adds  the work of advocacy forums  through physical meetings and   radio talkshows has motivated, informed, unified and contributed towards desirable change in service delivery and accountability in the districts of Rwenzori Region.

"There is a lot of insecurity in Mugusu Sub-county, people's retail shops are routed everyday and now business people have resorted to sleeping in their shops to guard their goods,  we  wonder  what is the duty and work  of a police officer who is always on  duty  at night with his  gun.  The robbing is always done  when the police officers  are on duty every-night,  but as a forum  we have reported the issue to the district leaders and the concerned leaders  from Kabarole District are investing this issue ". Said  Tibenda  Stephen the Secretary of  People' Rights and forum for development , Kabarole District. 

Tibenda adds that on 1st  February 2015 the  leader of People' Rights and forum for development  Mr Mukwono appeared on  Better FM on listener forum a program sponsored  by ToroDev  sharing  and discussing about the issue of insecurity, over 10  people from Mugusu sub county called in and sent SMS asking the police officers  to  do their duty or if they can't the local citizens will start sleeping in their shops to guard their properties and  local citizens will  find out if the Police of Mugusu has a hand in robbing people' shops.


Politicians investing money to win elections

The panelists during the radio talkshow.
On 8th February 2015, Mr. Muntu K Willy district speaker from Ntoroko district and Mr Mwanguhya Kenneth a responsible citizen from Hakibale Committed Citizen for Better service, Kabarole district were among the panelists who appeared on better FM to discuss the issue of politicians buying people' votes during the campaigns to win elections. 

Politicians who bribe people with money during campaigns fall in this say "USING MONEY TO GET MORE MONEY". They think that if they are elected they will in 5 years of being  in power will be able to harvest more money to pay back the money spent buying people' votes such politicians don’t   provide any improved services to people we need to learn a lesson from what we have seen so far". Said Muntu Willy from Ntoroko district.
“We are having poor services in health, education, roads and others sectors because voters vote according to who is rich and with much money and the potential, knowledgeable, talented and capable leaders who have no money are always with the least votes during the elections this is a big problem, in Uganda without money you can be a voted. Today Voters think that a politician with much money is a good leader to represent people at the district, in the parliament and other political seats forgetting that politicians who have money will always want to make more money for themselves, so when they are elected they mind about making more money for themselves but not to deliver service people.”Mwaguhya Kenneth of Hakibale Committed Citizen for Better service, Kabarole district. 

Local Non Government organizations, have a big role to play to sensitize local citizen on how to vote wisely, local radio stations should teach people who are not knowledgeable about who a good leader is, why people have to vote wisely?, how local citizens can avoid leaders who come with money to buy their votes?, we need to love our country and refuse to vote leaders who come with money to buy votes and when local citizens are sensitized we shall have better leadership in future and we shall have somehow improved services if we know what we want from the politicians we vote to represent us at any level ”. Said Kyaligoza a caller from Nyabuharwa, Kyenjojo District. 

“Voters I kindly request you not to accept any money or basic needs from leaders who come to buy your vote during the election period, a capable leaders who is willing to serve his or her people and deliver better services cannot give out money to buy a vote and confuse the voter. A leader who buys a vote proves that he is just after making more money when he is elected, after the elections and he/she will just go to office to bring back the money he/she spent to buy the votes and he will never deliver any service to people that voted”. Said Peter a caller from Kasese district.

During the live radio discussion over 15 local citizens called in to give in their , opinions , views, perceptive with reference to the topic being discussed about the experience they have gone through during the election campaign process. 
The  live radio discussions are supported by SIDA/CIPESA and NED on a project aimed at converging appropriate ICT tools to improve service delivery in the Rwenzori Region.