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Here are more things government should tax

Dear Government (whatever that means),

I gladly welcome suggestions to introduce new taxes without cutting on any of the old.

Kindly, help us and let every Ugandan realise you are committed to making sure no one carries a smile and that, like white ants, their silence won’t save them from being eaten. Squeeze harder until our national anthem becomes ‘wuuwi, wuuwiii’.

Ugandans deserve it; and what can they do, anyway? You removed term limits as they breathed cold fire, like castrated dogs. Didn’t they go back to their houses, like Lira chicken climbing down a tree after a heavy downpour?

When they alleged the 2016 elections were rigged and shouted themselves soar about starting to vote as late as 2pm in Kampala, what did they do? Didn’t they eventually calm down, like a sorcerer after a spell of possession? Aren’t they waiting to vote again in 2021; sorry, 2023?

When our dear president told them frankly that he is not their servant, all they could do was kick their social media walls in rage. When they tried to publically detest the utterance, they trembled like a thin dog easing itself in the wind.

What seemed like was going to be the toughest was the removal of the age limit cap on presidency. I had never seen them fume like that before. They threatened it would only happen over their dead bodies. Perhaps their bodies are dead now, for it already passed! They likened it to rape, but all they did after was to try to repair the bed.

When did the noise of a frog stop a cow from drinking water? They were only raging about removal of the age limit, and you challenged them by extending MPs’ terms, too. That is what the Baganda call throwing someone down and you bite them as well – double jeopardy. All we saw afterwards was them coiling like orphaned puppies.   

With all the direct and indirect taxes they pay, when they go to Mulago hospital and get little or no help, what do they do? Don’t the poor ones go back to their homes to die peacefully without the inconvenience of medicine?

Of course, they know you are not responsible for their deaths; that is why in their eulogies they say it was God’s will. Those are the people you are dealing with. There is nothing to be scared of. So, anything that can increase our tax base to bring more money to your disposal is okay.

I, therefore, suggest that we also consider taxing the following. It is said there are two things we cannot escape: death and taxes. However, you could have observed there are many people dying unnecessarily in our country.

We could curb this by introducing a death tax. Families of the deceased should pay a certain amount before we allow them to proceed with burial – call it a ‘death fee’.

I also think the 32 years in which you have allowed them to breathe free oxygen is enough. We should calculate the average amount of air one breathes in every month and ask them to pay some monthly levy – name it ‘pay as you breathe’.

Even the rainwater you have permitted people to harvest at no cost, it is high time they paid per 20 litres. All rainwater tanks should be registered with URA, and be inspected every after a downpour to record the taxable amount of harvest.

It is also obvious many of our people are failing to get to our lower middle-income status target because they spend a lot of time talking/chatting.

Social media taxes could help on this, but I think they should be revised a little to be more effective. Social media users should be taxed in accordance with the number of words they post, selfies, tweets, re-tweets, and the number of comments they attract.

Using wireless internet to access social media should be handled like any other form of tax evasion. There is a lot you need the money for, which every citizen should be able to understand.

You know the number of ministers we have (perhaps among the biggest in Africa), the number of MPs, presidential advisors, local government officials, DISOs, GISOs, RDCs, etc. People should also understand facilitating MPs to ‘consult’ and celebrate victory afterwards took a lot of money that must be replaced.

Soon we may also need to facilitate them for the referendum on presidential term extension (one of the most urgent needs of the country). The ‘handshake’ budget also needs to be boosted. Clearly, the needs are many. Oh, you could as well add secondary needs like roads, hospitals, and schools.

As an environmentalist, I am also happy that cars older than eight years will no longer be allowed into the country. Critics who doubted your commitment to environmental protection are silenced now.

Those old cars are responsible for destroying our wetlands and emitting volumes of carbon that end up in the heads of our leaders. Those who can’t afford newer cars shouldn’t mind, soon Kiira Motors will be producing affordable ones.

Currently, a litre of petrol goes for around Shs 3,980. But we still experience traffic jam. Add a little tax to take it up to Shs 4,500 to test their response. If they remain calm and quiet, then that would be worrying. Are they alive?

I propose at such a stage we use a jet to randomly pour cold water on them. Perhaps, then, they will respond. I am reminded of a certain primary school teacher of mine who would not stop caning you until you cried out in clear expression of intense pain. Flog us, Government, flog harder.

jsssentongo@gmail.com

The author heads the Centre for African Studies at Uganda Martyrs University, Nkozi.

Comments

+4 #11 Kiiza Isaac 2018-04-23 09:58
Jim, your suggestions are spot on. I think we need more of those taxes even beyond the privileged.

I think every tax should also be taxed, after all it is revenue for government. In that case, we will have revenue even more.

If they can tax my NSSF, then the government (damn them) should tax each tax that they get from every tax. Talk of a great cycle of getting higher revenue.
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-4 #12 simo 2018-04-23 12:09
This is incitement of violence & a ploy to incite the public towards civil disobedience. For us we just want peace & do our work.

No need for defiance, even if whatever is taxed. My advice to Ugandans is just speak up & vote against the corrupt as opposed to violent means to change government.
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+2 #13 Remase 2018-04-23 12:09
Sentongo, "Squeeze harder until our national anthem becomes ‘wuuwi, wuuwiii’." Amen!
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+3 #14 Lakwena 2018-04-23 13:53
Quoting simo:
This is incitement of violence & a ploy to incite the public towards civil disobedience. For us we just want peace & do our work.

No need for defiance, even if whatever is taxed. My advice to Ugandans is just speak up & vote against the corrupt as opposed to violent means to change government.


simo, I wonder why you did not stop Mr. M7 from inciting violence in Luweero that got hundreds of thousand killed and properties destroyed.

In other words you are the people who went to the bush and caused mayhem, but now do want others to do so.

You didn't go to court when you miserably lost the 1980 election, but since, you rig every election and urge the victims of your rigging to go to court.

You are the same people proliferating corruption, and therefore do not want anybody to derail the gravy-train/rock the boat.
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0 #15 Akot 2018-04-23 18:32
Lakwena, thanks!

As Ugandans just go along accepting to be abused, musevenis worshipers will continue praising the inhuman tribalistic system that is held in place by Ugandans themselves! This means they will continue laughting at Ugandans, defending the most inhuman dictatorship the world has ever seen!

After all, UN-EU support museven too & give millions of dollars quarterly for refugee cause in peaceful museveni Uganda!

Have UN-EU said a word about enslavement of Ugandans under the inhuman tribalistic rule?

What will Acholi tribal leader do when museveni dissolves the tribalistic system & make Uganda the country he dreamed of with Amuru his food production land!

It's now just a matter of timing for museveni to dissolve the tribalistic system & be the real lifetime dictator in a country he came to own & will!
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0 #16 Akot 2018-04-23 18:41
simo, understood,

Ugandans must speak up by UNITING & blocking museveni completely!

Election under museveni will not change a thing because he will always be the winner!

Ugandans have said no to violence & this is why they have not taken to arms, but just maintain the tribalistic system with tribal leaders served by the demon, while tribes without tribal leaders just go along too!

How can a people who have not taken to arms be violent?

It's only museveni who is armed against Ugandans & he accepts no opposition either, but

UNITY & coming out in full weight to block museveni completely will throw him out: either by the army or by Ugandans or just TOGETHER as ONE!
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