“Parliament is a precious ground. When you come there, know its precious ground and do your work diligently to serve the people of Uganda diligently and genuinely without favour. If we do that, Parliament will do a lot of contributions to the development of Uganda”, the President said.
The President was speaking as chief guest at the awards giving ceremony on Friday to recognize leaders in Uganda that have made contributions to the development of the country in last 50 years of Uganda’s independence.
The ceremony took place last evening at Speke Resort, Munyonyo in Kampala.
The awards, presented by the Parliament of Uganda, saw the President receiving his in recognition of his contribution as Chairman of the National Resistance Council (NRC) from 1986 – 1996.
The Parliamentary ceremony that was led by the Speaker, Rt. Hon. Rebecca Kadaga, was part of the activities marking Parliamentary Week that began nearly a week ago to commemorate the 50 years of independence of Uganda.
Other notable recipients of the awards included past Speakers, Sir John B. Griffin (1962 – 1966), Narendra M. Patel (1967 – 1971) who was Uganda’s first non-British Speaker, Prof. Edward Rugumayo (1979 – 1980) who served as Chairman of the National Consultative Council, Mr. Francis Butagira (1980 – 1985), Mr. James Wapakhabulo (1996 – 1998), Mr. Francis Ayume (1998 – 2001) and Mr. Edward Kiwanuka Ssekandi (2001 – 2011) and currently Uganda’s Vice President.
Deputy Speakers, leaders of government business, leaders of the opposition, pioneer Member of Parliament and Clerk to Parliament also received awards.
The late Apollo Milton Obote, first Prime Minster of independent Uganda, was awarded for his service as one of the leaders of government business.
President Museveni said that he and a number of other Ugandans expended a lot of their efforts to restore the Parliament of Uganda that had been abolished by late dictator Idi Amin regime in 1971.
He urged those responsible to follow up on the missing information about the history of Uganda so that a complete compilation is realized for the benefit of people. He noted it would be good to connect the old and new Uganda as we commemorate her golden jubilee of independence.
Museveni strongly advised the people of Uganda to take time to think deeply about what ought to be done to accelerate further the transformation and development process of the country.
He said it was worthwhile to take note of the fact that countries like Singapore, South Korea, Indonesia and Thailand, which were under-developed recently, have now developed ahead of Uganda as well as some other African countries.
He said that it would be prudent for leaders and the people of Africa to study diligently “what it is that the Asians have done and Africans have not done, to develop.”
He said that although Uganda went through a lot of problems, it was gratifying to note that in the main, Ugandans have exerted efforts for strategic development.
He congratulated the people and thanked the Parliament Uganda for their efforts to capture the history of our country on this great occasion of the golden jubilee independence celebrations.
Parliamentary Speaker, Rt. Hon. Rebecca Kadaga, who also received the award, wished all Ugandans happy independence celebrations. She called for solidarity and peace for another 50 years as the country moves forward.
Uganda’s first Parliamentary Speaker, Narendra M. Patel, who resides in Australia, commended the great progress and development the country has attained. He also expressed happiness to have met President Museveni and some friends with whom he had worked before he left the country in 1972 when the Amin regime expelled Asians.