Village leaders to Gov’t: We want motorcycles not bicycles

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The village chairpersons in Kagadi District, have asked the government to stop giving them bicycles as means of transport but consider giving them motorcycles and increasing the ex-gratia of Shs120,000 they receive annually.

They said this on Friday when the state minister for Transport Fred Byamukama was officiating the handover of 1057 bicycles to 906 village chairpersons and 151 chairpersons Local council twos in the district.

According to the village chairpersons, it is a shame to see the government paying older persons Shs25,000 monthly while village chairpersons are being paid Shs10,000.

Mr Charles Kakatira, the chairman of Kagadi Central in Kagadi Town Council, said that although they accepted to take bicycles this time, the government should know that chairpersons do a great job in monitoring government programs which require motorcycles.

“At my age I don’t need a bicycle, I need a motorcycle because I no longer use bicycles to move,” he said.

Minister Fred Byamukama, said chairmen had started over charging locals for stamp services

Mr Christopher Male, the chairman of Nyanseke B village, said he has spent 29 years as village chairperson saying it’s unfortunate to see that the government is giving him a bicycle yet he is soon going to retire.

“In 2023, we shall elect other village chairpersons, I am getting old and I want to retire, government should have given me a motorcycle as my package at least,” he said.

The chairperson of the Uganda Local Government Association, Mr Richard Rwabuhinga, who doubles as Kabarole District chairman, said it’s true the village chairpersons need motorcycles and it’s what they had requested, but they should patiently wait for the government response.

“The government is recognizing you that is why it has given you bicycles. We know you want an increase in your ex-gratia and also motorcycles. It’s what we had requested from the government, but for now, take bicycles and don’t sell them,” he said.

Minister Fred Byamukama during the handover of 1057 bicycles to chairmen LCIs and LCIIs in Kagadi on Friday-Photo by Thomas Tumwebaze

Rwabuhinga said this while during the handover of same bicycles in Kabarole district in an event presided over by the State minister State minister for local government, Ms Victoria Businge Rusoke.

Minister Fred Byamukama responded that the village chairpersons should not lose hope in the government adding that the government knows their demands and that soon the president will increase on their ex-gratia.

Minister said chairmen had started over charging locals for stamp services and said that soon the government will increase their ex-gratia for the betterment of village services.

 “Let us be patient with the president and government. I know the president is thinking about you,” Byamukama said

Yosia Ndibwami, Kagadi district Chairman addressing the village chairmen on Friday at RDCs office in Kagadi Town-Photo by Thomas Tumwebaze

He also said the president recognizes their roles in national building and development and asked chairmen LCIs to desist from conniving with police in land grabbing and others.

Yosia Ndibwami, the Kagadi district Chairman said the government should start thinking of how remunerate the village leaders including the Village Health Teams and local councilors so that service delivery can smoothly flow to the local person.

He applauded the village chairmen for the tremendous work they do in security and also warned them of the coming festive days.

He implored them to have village registers for new entrants in their villages so that they can continue to be secure.

However, by the end of the exercise, bicycles had started going missing and being taken by masqueraders.

Editorial @ Nettl Media News


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