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President Museveni, New Envoys Discuss Development, Refugees

Wednesday, 28th July 2021
New UN Resident Coordinator to Uganda H.E. Susan Namondo Ngongi with President Museveni at State House Entebbe
President Yoweri Museveni has received letters of credence from the new Chinese Ambassador to Uganda Zhang Lizhong and the new UN Resident Coordinator to Uganda H.E. Susan Namondo Ngongi at separate ceremonies held at State House Entebbe yesterday.

President Yoweri Museveni hailed the excellent relationship between Uganda and China especially the support extended to Uganda in various economic fields.
"We have had a very good relationship with China for a very long time. We are grateful for the support China has given to us; the stadium, soft loans, and other programs and projects. We are now looking at the Standard Gauge Railway," he said.

During a meeting with ambassador Zhang Lizhong, the President said that Uganda is looking forward to for scientific cooperation with China in the development of the COVID-19 vaccines.
President Museveni also noted that the economic rise of China should be an opportunity for more cooperation including business.
Ambassador Zhang Lizhong thanked President Museveni for the warm message sent to his counterpart President Xi-Jinping and the people of China upon the centenary celebrations of CPC.
"We appreciate your message and I want to take this opportunity to convey good wishes and best regards to Your Excellency and also wish greater progress to your National development and your string leadership," he said.

He said that China will continue to support the economic transformation and industrialization of Uganda, and will encourage more Chinese investors to come and do business in Uganda as the investment environment and security are very conducive.
He promised to work closely with developing countries on vaccine research and production also disclosed that the 300,000 COVID-19 vaccines promised early this year by his government will be in Uganda on Saturday the 31st of this month July and pledged to lobby for more vaccines for Uganda.

In a separate meeting, President Museveni welcomed the new UN Resident coordinator to Uganda Ms. Susan Ngongi Namondo with whom they discussed issues of mutual interest between Uganda and the United Nations particularly environmental conservation and refugees.
"One area you can look at is the environment. This part of the world is very fertile with a lot of water and nice climate. When Europeans came, they said we had too much rain and water in swamps and started planting water-drying species. A culture some of our people inherited by cultivating in the wetlands. Now want to reverse that," he said. 

The President said in some cases, they may have to pay compensation for people who were misled by governments to leave the swamps while those who willingly invaded wetlands would be chased out.
"These swamps are tributaries of the Nile but with aquatic species. For those misled by governments and colonialist, we shall have to compensate them but those who intentionally invaded swamps and forests, we shall just chase them but we shall not take them to prison but no compensation. Once we bring back full nature, very fertile and can support big part of Africa in terms of food and row materials we want to stop this sacrilege," he said.

The President also singled out the issue of refugees in relation to land, relief, alternative energy and education.
"We have got 1.6million refugees whom you are feeding but they are really cutting our trees. UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres came and organized fundraising and got money for one or two roads in refugee areas which is good but work on another form of energy other than biomass. We can work with our people about alternative energy like biogas," he said.
The President said if refugees get relief and the issue of energy, which is not depending on trees, is solved and provision of water and education for their children, they will be happy and not cause any deficit. He also urged the UN to have a policy of prefabricated shelter to avoid use of trees.

Ms. Susan Namondo from Cameroon on her part pledged to work for the continued support from the UN to Uganda especially in achieving the country's SDGs.
"My job here is to work with all colleagues and see how to support your development plans," she said.

Courtesy of the Presidential Press Unit (PPU)
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