Uganda: Capitalism has impoverished our society

Like most revolutionaries, President Museveni’s ideas inclined to a socialistic tendency. His thinking at the time he took over power was one of a leader who had the nation at heart. He believed that the society is above the individual and he once said he was never to fly in a presidential jet when millions of Ugandans couldn’t afford shoes. Understanding the nature of capitalism will help us understand why he now advocates for a different agenda.

Capitalism is a natural phenomenon characterised by the insatiable quest for gain, the accumulation and concentration of wealth, and unhealthy competition between individuals for resources. The system flourishes on competition which sprouts as individuals manipulate the society for self-gain.

With capitalism, governments have been made to abandon their social contracts and now concentrate on enabling individuals to grow their personal financial assets.

In Uganda, the system has enabled a few individuals to prosper through closing deals with multinationals and trading foreign-made goods. The result is a Uganda that imports basically everything and yet a staggering 80 per cent of its labour is unemployed. This trend has sustained a crisis that has denied millions of us the opportunity to achieve an adequate and dignified living.

The illogical capitalistic economy left on its own has made resources inaccessible for us to develop our potential. Our potential to develop industry, agriculture, science and technology lies in the availability of resources.

At the moment most of the resources needed are in the hands of individuals who hoard them, limiting their application and holding back our development.

Our country is poor because millions of our able-bodied men and women have been condemned to a life of enforced inactivity. Their joblessness can easily be eliminated by putting the unemployed and underemployed to work. But this is impossible under the current development efforts by the government which aim at creating employment opportunities by depending on foreign direct investment or aid.

The global trend shows that the prosperity of nations is from making other nations poor, a typical characteristic of a capitalistic setting. This setting has enabled nations and individuals ravage the planet in search of loot, degrading our environment, initiating wars and impoverishing our societies. Uganda has no countries to ravage; it is only available to be ravaged.

Our embracing of the capitalistic economy has not only impoverished our society but has partly dehumanised us. Many people have shamelessly ravaged the lives of their own kin so that they can become wealthy.