Baz Waiswa

Baz Waiswa

Kamwokya School Gets Promised Sanitary Toilets

Construction of good modern sanitary toilets at Good Samaritan Primary School in Kamwokya, Kampala suburb Friday commenced with a team from The Ruparelia Foundation leading way to the realization of this promise.

The money for setting up the sanitation facilities are proceeds from the Royal Ascot Goat Races social event that took place on October 12, 2019, at Speke Resort Munyonyo.

The Goat Races, Uganda’s most popular social events, that take place at Speke Resort was this year bigger, merrier and as always extravagant fashion. It provided a platform for revelers to network and mix business with pleasure.

Several companies sponsored this year’s edition of the goat races. These included Tusker Malt Lager, Ruparelia Group, 88.2 Sanyu FM, Goldstar Insurance, Speke Resort Munyonyo, Robbialac, and NTV Uganda.

And now the money that was raised from this social event is helping the ghetto people of Kamwokaya with better eco-friendly toilets. Rajiv Ruparelia said the charity was aimed at improving the sanitation in the slums of Kampala.

The state of sanitation many Kampala slums and in particular Kamwokya has been found to be wanting and initiatives by corporates like the Ruparelia Foundation come in handy to uplift the healthy living standards of the people who live there.

The Ruparelia Foundation works to improve and promote health, education, sports, general welfare, and poverty eradication, improve livelihoods, support the welfare of wildlife and preservation of the environment by fostering partnerships among businesses, corporations, with the government, non-governmental organization and individuals.

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Why Sudhir Snubbed COSASE Invite In DAPCB Inquiry

Businessman Dr. Sudhir Ruparelia, the chairman of Ruparelia Group and Managing Director of Meera Investments Limited snubbed an invite by Parliament's Committee on Commissions, Statutory Authorities and State Enterprises (COSASE) on Tuesday, 3rd December 2019, to answer queries on how he acquired certain properties within the city.

The committee investigating how politicians and businessmen across the country acquired properties from the Departed Asians Property Custodian Board (DAPCB) had invited Ruparelia to appear before the committee on Wednesday and explain how he acquired five properties.

However, the businessman on the same day, through his lawyers of Walusimbi & Co Advocates wrote back to the committee head Ibrahim Kasozi, the Makindye East MP, saying their client cannot appear before Parliament since he has never purchased any properties from the Departed Asians Properties Custodian Board.

"Our clients noted your invitation for him to appear tomorrow - 4/12/2019 - before the committee with regard to your inquiry into matters of the Departed Asians Property Custodian Board land purchases.

In the result, he (Sudhir) requests for your advice as to why his presence is required, especially it being that he has never purchased any property from the Departed Asians Property Custodian Board, nor has he claimed on behalf of anybody.

Your detail, as requested for above, will enable him to benefit from informed legal advice and approach the matter from an informed view." Walusimbi & Co Advocates said in the letter.

In response, Kasozi wrote back naming five properties that the committee is interested in - the properties are Plot 23 on Jinja Road, Plot 24 on Kampala Road, Plot 5 on Colville Street, Plot 3 and 5 on Bombo Road in Kampala and Plot 26 on Republic Street in Mbale, eastern Uganda.

And still, in a written response, Sudhir through his lawyers denied, saying: "Our client reiterates that he has in all instances not purchased any said properties from the Departed Asians Property Custodian Board, which your esteemed committee is inquiring into."

About the building on Plot 43, Jinja Road, Ruparelia said what he possesses does not march with the descriptions of COSASE. However, he promised to make a search at the Lands Registry and report to Parliament.

The city tycoon insisted that he possesses a genuine land title for the property on Plot 8, Colvile Street in Kampala, which he said he purchased from registered owners.

For Plot 24 on Kampala road, Mr Sudhir said he bought the property under his company, Meera Investments Ltd and that in 2012, he won a court case, which DAPCB had instituted against him challenging his ownership.

He said that Plot 3 and 5 on Bombo Road were bought from Joint Ven (U) Ltd. He also said that Meera investments Limited never bought from DAPCB using third parties.

PHOTOS: DR Congo Best At Victoria University International Cultural Gala

Cultural diversity came alive at Victoria University last Saturday during this year’s international cultural day. It was colorful and full of energy as students did their best to make their country stand out and proud.

And at the end of energetic pompous day, students from Democratic Republic of Congo (DR Congo) won this year’s international day cultural showcase. They were followed by those from Zimbabwe and Somalia. The students showcased items representing their cultures in form of food, music, dance and language (speech).

In the category of dress, Zimbabwe took first place while DR Congo was second while Rwanda and Somalia tied in third. In the food category, Somalia won while Rwanda, Nigeria and Uganda came second, DR Congo took third.

The category of Speech (language) was won by Zimbabwe and DR Congo in a tie, second place was take by Burundi and another tie between South Sudan, Somalia and Nigeria took third position.

And in the category of music and dance DR Congo and South Sudan won in first place, Uganda and Burundi were second while Rwanda and Somalia came third. Other countries that were represented included Norway, Kenya, Tanzania, Malawi, Ghana and India.

Below are photos to give you a better picture of what transpired.







Farmers Want Government To Implement Of Organic Farming Policy

Farmers across the country want the government to start implementing the recently passed National Organic Agricultural Policy that was passed by the cabinet in July 2019.

The farmers also want government through the Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries to sensitize farmers about the policy.

They say that since its enactment government has not come out to create awareness of the policy to the stakeholders (farmers and Extension Service providers) who are the technical people to implement the objectives of the policy.

Christopher Wali, a former agricultural extension services providers and also a farmer from Mukono District, says that failure by the government to create more awareness about the policy and implementation delays may delay local farmers to embrace organic farming practices.

Many smallholder farmers are willing to embrace organic farming due to its social, environmental and health values.

“Many rural farmers are not aware of the policy yet the document guides farmers and policy implementers on how to practice organic farming. The government should wake up and carry out massive sensitization about the policy. This will guide the farmers to make decisions on which farming practices they should adopt,” Wali said

The agriculturalist noted that Uganda has a comparative advantage in practising organic agriculture because of its favorable weather and also the high demand for organically produced agricultural produces on the local, region and international market.

On July 29th 2019, cabinet approved the approved the National Organic Agriculture Policy whose objectives are; to strengthen organic agriculture research, appropriate technology development and utilization, to promote production, processing and marketing for organic products among other objectives of the policy is to enhance appropriate post-harvest handling practices and value addition to organic agricultural products and lastly to  strengthen environmental conservation, indigenous biodiversity and sustainable use of natural resources.

The officer made the remarks during the official launch of the 5years Ecological Organic Agriculture (EOA) project at the Ntenjeru sub-county Community Center in Mukono District recently.

The overall goal of the project is to mainstream EOA into agricultural production system by 2025 in order to improve agricultural productivity, food security access to markets and sustainable development.

The project is being implemented in 9 African countries including Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda, Ethiopia, Mali, Senegal, Benin and Nigeria. In Uganda, the project will be implemented in four Districts namely Mukono, Luwero, Masaka and Wakiso.

The ecological project will be spearheaded by Eastern and Southern Smallscale Farmers Forum Uganda chapter in collaboration with other institutions such as Uganda Martyrs University Nkozi, Kulika Uganda and PELUM Uganda.

Speaking at the launch of the project, Hakim Baliraine, the ESAFF Uganda chairperson, noted that once Ugandan farmers adopt organic farming this will help in mitigating the high rates of environmental and biodiversity degradation and also save many lives Ugandans.

“Conventional farming has played a big role in degrading our environment because of the pollution from the inorganic agricultural inputs such as fertilizers, herbicides among other agricultural inputs.

Apart from degrading the environment, foods grown in conventional practice have health hazards that is why we are seeing many Ugandans suffering from dangerous diseases like cancer,” he said

He challenged  agricultural extension services providers across the country to mainstream organic agricultural practices in their extension services this will help farmers to understand the economic importance of organic farming.

Rashida Kabanda, the project manager for EOA, stated that the project has four pillars and once they are well implemented it will change the farmers mind towards  Organic farming practices.

 The four pillars according to the project managers are Research and Applied Knowledge, Information Communication and Extension, Value chain and market Development and lastly Support and cementing, management, coordination and Governance.  

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