Or at least their leaders and so called NRM elite are! And those who elect them!
It takes a special kind of stupid to walk into a Ugandan hospital --- and then go and re -elect Museveni after thirty years!
It takes a special kind of stupid to go to Kololo to "celebrate" with a 30 million shilling cake with 112 ladders at a ceremony worth 1.5 billion shillings when the only obsolete radiotherapy machine in the country, is broken!
It takes a special kind of stupid to hand over 70 billion shillings to the presidents office, not for its whole budget but for a supplementary budget after misusing its vote to bribe the ageing incumbent back into power --- when the only radiation machine in the country lies broken for want of 10 billion shillings! Magufuli in Tanzania scrapped his inauguration ceremoney and allocated the money elsewhere. His first priority act was fixing the Tanzanian Mulago, Muhimbili.
The Ugandan leopard just loitered through Mulago --- and business went on as usual while his sycophants continued singing their special kind of stupid NRM lies!
It takes a special kind of stupid to celebrate a government that relies on one radiotherapy machine donated to it in 1995!
It takes a special kind of stupid to elect a president who flies his daughter at your expense to Germany for a natural birth !
It takes a special kind of stupidity to put your faith in a government and politicians who despite being in power for thirty years, do not trust the local hospitals and all have their care at your own expense overseas! Whoever ever heard of anyone but a stupid person eating food prepared by a chef who would not eat his own food?
It takes a special kind of stupidity not to recognise that the only reason they run away is because they know that they are giving you crap --- yet in a few weeks time, the same idiots first order of business is going to be buying themselves billions of dollars worth of cars and increasing their multimillion shilling wages --- at your expense!
It takes a special kind of stupid to place ones faith in a government of thieves who in thirty years have never ever prosecuted a single thief yet claim to be tough on corruption!
My dear old friend Patrick Kateihwaho and his wololos are celebrating the win of stupidity over commonsense!
The definition of Stupid is: "Knowing the truth, seeing the truth, but still believing the lies."
My dear friend Patrick and other regime sycophants rely on their closeness to the leopard to line their pockets with enough money to treat themselves overseas or get brown envelopes from him!
But if you asked them which facility in Uganda they would go to should one of the following ever happen to them or their own, they will look at you angazi, like a rabbit caught in bright headlights!
If they had cancer and needed a cancer operation, radiotherapy or cancer chemotherapy.
If they had a major heart attack and required emergency interventional cardiology for an angiogram and angioplasty.
If they had a major stroke and needed acute stroke care, including acute stroke thrombolysis and subsequent rehabilitation.
If they had kidney failure and required emergency and chronic renal dialysis.
If they needed a kidney, liver or heart transplant.
If they needed emergency eye surgery, a cataract removal or insertion of an artificial intraocular lens.
If they had an autoimmune condition, lymphoma or leukaemia and needed plasmapharesis, a peripheral stem cell collection, high dose chemotherapy and an autologous stem cell, cord blood or a donor bone marror transplant.
If they were caught in a fire and required a specialised burns unit.
if they were involved in a major road traffic trauma and required emergency trauma surgery including evacuation, stablisation and transport!
Ignorance is bliss --- but stupidity is inexcusable!
While Patrick and his friends celebrate and take paesants for a ride, the only radiation treatment machine is broken.
Truth be said though, apart from hype, patients may not actually be missing out on much as this machine is really a relic from the past!
Donated in 1995, it really is a marvel that its still in use. Cobalt machines have been phased out in many countries in favour of linear accelerators that do not use a radioactive source.
Cobalt sources are highly regulated and costly depending on whether you source them from a highly regulated country like Canada (80 -100,000 dollars) or a low regulation country like Russia (5,000 _ 10,000 dollars). Depleted cobalt sources also have to be disposed of at a cost of about 80,000 US dollars each!
Cobalt sources decay. They will decay whether you are using them or not. Each source has got to be replaced every five years and the energy drops off with time. Linear accelerators do not decay and can be turned off and on. The real cost in linear accelerators is the support contracts that can be quite costly. Linear accelerators maybe cheaper than cobalt machines to buy and install.
The real costs in setting up a new radiation facility is the set up or capital costs of building a bunker. A bunker has lead walls to shield radiation and prevent it leaking out to the surroundings. The new Uganda Cancer Institute has a site for a bunker but no money to build one and is waiting upon the government. GIven it has enough trouble getting the government to deliver upon annual costs, they may be waiting a long time --- they have already been waiting anyway. Its not quite clear though why they are building a new facility when they already have a bunker in the old radiation oncology facility they could reuse instead of decommissioning it or duplicating.
A modern machine treats about 60 people a day running at capacity! Its really unlikely that one ancient rickety machine that breaks down as much as it works would fill anywhere near the needs of a country of 35 going on 40 million people!
At the end of the day, the NRM government is really hoodwinking Ugandans!
I live in a city of 1.8 million people and a state of 2.5 million.
Last year two major new hospitals were built and opened. Several other new childrens and womens hospitals have been constructed, while others have had major expansions.
Each of these major hospitals has got hundreds of doctors and each specialist department has got more doctors and specialists than the whole country, Uganda. When my father had his operation last year, his specialist had rooms on a street barely 300 metres that has more urologists than the whole country Uganda.
But it takes a special kind of stupid, one only found in Uganda to imagine that Uganda, a country of almost 40 million people thought it fit to sell its less than four urologists to a small Carribean island nation.
That this made sense to some idiots in the NRM government takes a special kind of stupid to understand!
In this small city that by the way is a lot bigger than Kampala which has a bigger population, there are 5 radiation oncology facilities and a 6th in a small town 200 km away. even that one has 2 pr 3 machines, several planning CT scanners, a radiology unit next door with several CT scanners, an MRI and a PET scan.
In any of the teaching, metropolitan and private hospitals one can get a CT scan 24 hours including weekends. Mulago's one old machine has got limited uses and works 9 to 5!
The door to needle time for an acute stroke or heart attack is down to within an hour!
Specialised cancer surgery services for various tumours are integrated with medical oncology services and radiation oncology services through multidisciplinary teams -Upepr gastrointestinal (GI), colrectal, gynaecological, breast, sarcoma, urological and neurological. Palliative care services in the hospital and the community provide care to cancer patients. Social support, transport assistance, accomodation etc all assist the patient access treatment. Patients have access to drugs some costing well over 150,000 USD per patient per year.
Some are going to point out that Uganda is a third world country BUT thats not the point here.
While my parents were here last year, they witnessed a change of government. In the morning there were rumours denied of course by the government of a challenge. By the evening news, they were announcing the result of a prime ministerial challenge and a new PM. The next morning, we woke up and went to work like nothing had happened. all services were uninterrupted. No one was shot, harrassed or imprisoned. By the next evening, swearing in was done and the old PM dissappeared into the sunset not to appear again on TV! That is called civilisation! Compare with the leopards threats!
The chaos in Uganda is not poverty. Its governance --- stupid! It takes a special kind of stupidity not to recognise this and keep on making the same mistakes!
In 1986, a young Museveni declared that, "a government that could not provide services to the people had no right being in power"
Thirty years later his followers and sycophants are too stupid to recognise the wisdom of those words!
And thats why if the Museveni of 1986 were to meet the Museveni of today, he would have him shot on sight!
Politicians need to be recycled often ---- like underwear! It takes a special kind of stupid to want the same old man to stay in power after thirty years!
Poor Patrick Kateihwaho! Middle age is coming with the need for more specialised medical care! All of the above medical problems happen to middle aged and older overweight men and women ie typical NRM eaters! Yet he is singing "steady progress" to the bottom!
It takes a special kind of stupid ...!