TOP M7 RDC SAYS ‘PPS MOLLY WAS OK, OMONA GOOD TOO’
By Anderson Burora
It’s been awhile since I had barely One uninterrupted hour, but since the holidays are on, let me raise a few of my thoughts about what has been taking place in the country that I think I have thoughts that could be of effect. When President Museveni announced the “long-awaited” cabinet reshuffle, as was expected, the critics went out doing what they do best, making sense of the president’s appointments, telling us where they believe he got it right, and what he should have done but didn’t do, using whatever parameter they opt to use.
When I looked through the list, one particular change caught my attention, that of the Hon. Molly Nawe Kamukama who was moved from the Principle Private Secretary (PPS) to Minister of State for Economic Monitoring. Molly’s miraculous rise to prominence is like the story of “From Grass to Grace” as the Bible says. First, she worked as the in-charge of civic education and Training with the Electoral Commission, then went to international organizations like UNDP, AU,IFES etc, from there she was appointed as Political Assistant to president Museveni, the NRM National Chairperson, she meticulously executed her role at both stations and was appointed the PPS in record time and now a minister.
The president Museveni I know believes in and rewards hard work that explains why so many hardworking but erstwhile unknown individuals catch his eye and get promoted into top positions – almost out of the blue. So, it goes without saying that Molly’s rise has a lot to do with her nature as a hardworking and determined person, during her tenure for instance as PPS which, she was able to put in place mechanisms that allowed the president execute his duties with more efficiency.
First, she gave meaning to the idea of delegation of roles. Before she took on the role, our president had been reduced to handling rather basic issues that didn’t even warrant his attention. Disputes among Boda-boda operators, Taxi Drivers’ groups and sections fighting over the ownership of a market all ended before the president.
Photos were circulated on social media showing the president “launching” anything from taps, to the tuku-tuku. Molly must have rightly reasoned that while it is important for the president to have a strong connection with everyone, it is even more important that his time is devoted to handling the more strategic issues in the country. Instead of settling squabbles, he should instead settle the whole issue of land ownership and have the former delegated to the line ministry or authority both of which are effectively equipped to address the issue. In this way, the president was able to engage with the more pressing issues that warranted his personal attention and in turn do more work given his schedule, little wonder, we have seen the president launch factories, and mega infrastructure like roads and hospitals, attained very high performance of manifesto implementation during her tenure.
Secondly, she managed to make the president engage Ugandans whenever need for it arose. When the proposed Amendment to Article 26 on compulsory acquisition of land for public projects became a thorny issue, the president personally moved to all the sub-regions in Uganda addressing the nation on Uganda’s most popular media, the radio, in sessions that allowed him to reach even the deepest corner of the nation and get their suggestion on the matter. With the people’s input, the president was able to determine the next course action from a vantage point. Recently, the president freely moved to all sub-regions to engage the wanainchi on matters of development during the wealth creation tours.
While the government does all that is humanly possible to ensure Uganda attain the Middle Income status and creates the enabling environment for achieving that, it was important that the head of state does such a tour to demonstrate the commitment of government and see how far the effort of government has enabled the attainment of desired goals in that regard. The president also got the time to directly interact with the nation and Bazukulu on social media sites like Facebook and Twitter.
Finally, Molly was able to effectively deal with a phenomenon that we often read about in the media, the claim that some people had ring-fenced the president, that they could access him something that had resulted into taking Lugambo/lies while others used such moments to fleece the public creating a perception that they could talk to the President about their issues. During her tenure as PPS, such claim went down and eventually died. If one wanted to meet the president and with a good reason, he was readily accessible and available for an appointment. This partly explains why we saw the president spare more time to engage different groups including foreign and local investors, business communities, innovators, athletes, religious leaders and other groups.
I have no doubt in my mind that the president’s choice of Hon. Omona as her replacement will do an equally commendable job as PPS, in fact, I can’t think of a better replacement for her than Omona. Now that the president has taken her to a less engaging role as Minister of State for Economic Monitoring, one can only wonder whether the president is preparing her for a bigger role to come ahead, knowing how people like her are not easy to come by in government, I won’t be surprised if the a much bigger political role is assigned to her in the coming days following her redeployed to a Position where she allowed to participate in Politics. (The writer is deputy RCC Nakawa Division).