News / Africa

Ugandan Activists to Continue ‘Walk to Work’ Protests Monday

Multimedia

Audio
Douglas Mpuga

Ugandan activists say the “walk to work” campaign to protest corruption, and rising food and fuel prices will continue throughout the country tomorrow (Monday).

“There will be walk to work tomorrow,” stressed Mathias Mpuuga, a newly-elected member of parliament from Masaka municipality in Central Uganda, just west of Lake Victoria.  He’s also the coordinator of the non-partisan Activists for Change (A4C) campaign.

“We shall end this campaign only if we have had a plausible response from government, which is responsible for the situation in the country.”

Mpuuga said the [walk to work] campaign was started because the activists wanted those responsible for high fuel and food prices to acknowledge responsibility.  However, he said, “the government claimed they would do nothing about it,” he said.

The situation seems to be changing, he added, “even the president in [last week’s] inaugural speech said [he] wants to do something about the situation in the country.”

Mpuuga said his remarks are a tacit admission that something is wrong. That admission by the government is good news for the protesters. “For us as A4C,” he said, “we can say we are on course.”

He said with the success of the walk to work campaign, it seems the whole country is realizing the issues being advocated by A4C affect everybody and not just political leaders.

Mpuuga described the government’s response as ‘unserious so far’ and “when you listen to the talk it is still riddled with the same arrogance although the arrogance is toning down a little bit.”

The problem with the president and his people, he said, “is that even when there are serious national issues to deal with, they do not want to admit there is a problem.”

He added that the government wants to address our issues by defeating [Dr. Kizza] Besigye. “I think they [the government] are frustrated because people are demanding a plausible response and telling government ‘this is not about Besigye. It’s about our country; it’s about your responsibly as leaders.’ ”

He said government‘s failure to address people’s concerns has led to a growing public response:  “We are getting so many players on board.”

Mpuuga said during the walk to work tomorrow the organizers will announce a host of other activities.

There have been violent clashes between Ugandan security and the protestors since early April. At least 9 people, including a two-year-old baby, have been killed, over 100 injured, and hundreds arrested.

President Museveni says the rise in the cost of fuel and food is caused by an increase in international oil prices and by drought, not by government policies.  He has refused to reduce taxes or provide subsidies to consumers.

Museveni says the protests are an effort by the opposition to avenge their loss in recent elections. The government describes the walk to work protest as illegal and has vowed to crush them.

You May Like

Turbulent Transition Imperils Tunisia’s Arab Spring Gains

Critics say new anti-terrorism laws worsen Tunisia's situation while others put faith in country’s vibrant civil organizations, women’s movement More

Burundi’s Political Crisis May Become Humanitarian One

United Nations aid agencies issue warning as deadly violence sends tens of thousands fleeing More

Yemenis Adjust to Life Under Houthi Rule

Locals want warring parties to strike deal to stop bloodletting before deciding how country is governed More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Seoul Sponsors Korean Unification Fairi
X
Brian Padden
May 29, 2015 1:27 PM
With inter-Korean relations deteriorating over the North’s nuclear program, past military provocations and human rights abuses, many Koreans still hold out hope for eventual peaceful re-unification. VOA’s Brian Padden visited a “unification fair” held this week in Seoul, where border communities promoted the benefits of increased cooperation.
Video

Video Seoul Sponsors Korean Unification Fair

With inter-Korean relations deteriorating over the North’s nuclear program, past military provocations and human rights abuses, many Koreans still hold out hope for eventual peaceful re-unification. VOA’s Brian Padden visited a “unification fair” held this week in Seoul, where border communities promoted the benefits of increased cooperation.
Video

Video Purple Door Coffeeshop: Changing Lives One Cup at a Time

For a quarter of his life, Kevin Persons lived on the street. Today, he is working behind the counter of an espresso bar, serving coffee and working to transition off the streets and into a home. Paul Vargas reports for VOA.
Video

Video Modular Robot Getting Closer to Reality

A robot being developed at Carnegie Mellon University has evolved into a multi-legged modular mechanical snake, able to move over rugged surfaces and explore the surroundings. Scientists say such machines could someday help in search and rescue operations. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Shanghai Hosts Big Consumer Electronics Show

Electronic gadgets are a huge success in China, judging by the first Asian Consumer Electronics Show, held this week in Shanghai. Over the course of two days, more than 20,000 visitors watched, tested and played with useful and some less-useful electronic devices exhibited by about 200 manufacturers. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Forced to Return Home, Afghan Refugees Face Increased Hardship

Undocumented refugees returning to Afghanistan from Pakistan have no jobs, no support system, and no home return to, and international aid agencies say they and the government are overwhelmed and under-resourced. Ayesha Tanzeem has more from Kabul.
Video

Video Britain Makes Controversial Move to Crack Down on Extremism

Britain is moving to tighten controls on extremist rhetoric, even when it does not incite violence or hatred -- a move that some are concerned might unduly restrict basic freedoms. It is an issue many countries are grappling with as extremist groups gain power in the Middle East, fueled in part by donations and fighters from the West. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London.
Video

Video 3D Printer Makes Replica of Iconic Sports Car

Cars with parts made by 3D printers are already on the road, but engineers are still learning about this new technology. While testing the possibility of printing an entire car, researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy recently created an electric-powered replica of an iconic sports roadster. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Al-Shabab Recruitment Drive Still on In Kenya

The al-Shabab militants that have long battled for control of Somalia also have recruited thousands of young people in Kenya, leaving many families disconsolate. Mohammed Yusuf recently visited the Kenyan town of Isiolo, and met with relatives of those recruited, as well as a many who have helped with the recruiting.
Video

Video A Small Oasis on Kabul's Outskirts Provides Relief From Security Tensions

When people in Kabul want to get away from the city and relax, many choose Qargha Lake, a small resort on the outskirts of Kabul. Ayesha Tanzeem visited and talked with people about the precious oasis.
Video

Video Kenyans Lament Losing Sons to al-Shabab

There is agony, fear and lost hope in the Kenyan town of Isiolo, a key target of a new al-Shabab recruitment drive. VOA's Mohammed Yusuf visits Isiolo to speak with families and at least one man who says he was a recruiter.
Video

Video Scientists Say Plankton More Important Than Previously Thought

Tiny ocean creatures called plankton are mostly thought of as food for whales and other large marine animals, but a four-year global study discovered, among other things, that plankton are a major source of oxygen on our planet. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Kenya’s Capital Sees Rise in Shisha Parlors

In Kenya, the smoking of shisha, a type of flavored tobacco, is the latest craze. Patrons are flocking to shisha parlors to smoke and socialize. But the practice can be addictive and harmful, though many dabblers may not realize the dangers, according to a new review. Lenny Ruvaga has more on the story for VOA from Nairobi, Kenya.

VOA Blogs