President Rejects Pleas on Salary Increments

Friday, 29th July 2016

President Yoweri Museveni has warned government officials against salary increments saying that an expensive workforce could scare away investors from the country.

The President who was delivering a paper titled “Fast Trucking Industrialization and Socio-Economic Transformation of Uganda: Hakuna Mchezo” at the ongoing retreat for Cabinet Ministers, NRM CEC and Permanent secretaries at the National Leadership Institute in Kyankwanzi, said that factories and investors run away from places that have costs of labour.

“In Africa, we are competing to have high costs of labour even when our economy is till young. I want you to study the progression of salaries in India and China,” he said.

He explained that the reason industries, such as the automobile industry, had migrated from Europe to Asia, was because people in Europe were paying themselves high salaries and the companies would not survive.

“We do not have the luxury of the imperialists where we had to buy whatever they produced whether we liked it or not. The Roman Empire collapsed because of too much comfort. When managing human beings, if a leader is not the first to sacrifice, then no one can sacrifice,” he said.

President Museveni called upon the Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development to guide people who are pushing for higher salaries saying that when leaders demand for higher salaries, the juniors will also demand for the same.

He explained that he supported the salary increment for judges because they are few while pilots can easily be lured by well paying airlines.

President Museveni asked the leaders at the NALI retreat to focus on the NRM principle of building an integrated economy so as to create employment opportunities for Ugandans.

“The agriculture, industry, minerals, chemicals and machinery sectors should be linked with the resources of the country and intellectual potential. Developing industries and services is the one way of organizing society,” he noted.

He explained that for investors to build industries in Uganda, the cost of transport, electricity, labour and finance, must be lowered.

“Industrialization means competitiveness with cheaper products but of good quality. Our industrialization must mean more global trade,” he said.