President Museveni has advised African governments to identify and give priority to areas that will spur development if the continent is to get to achieve economic transformation. He opposed the tendency of discussing African problems using what he termed as a ‘fragmented approach’ emphasizing the need to work towards increasing the workforce in Africa.
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This forum seeks to discuss concrete ways in which the TICAD can further enhance support for the promotion of democratic governance in Africa, consistent with priorities outlined in agenda 2063.
President Museveni told participants that Africa’s growth is still frustrated by bottlenecks such as lack of infrastructure, inadequate human resource capacity and a fragmented market among others.
“Africa still lags behind in infrastructure such as electricity, railways, roads and ICT. With the exception of South Africa and Libya during Gaddafi’s reign, the rest of Africa has a very low kilowatt hour per capita. But without electricity how do you attract investments and jobs?”
In order to boost production, Museveni argued that countries on the continent need a ready market that is big enough which he blamed on the colonization by Western powers in the early 90s.
He further punched holes in the idea that democracy and good governance guarantee any country’s development.
“Compare with China. It is a Communist country, does not have the kind of democracy we see in Africa, but it has attracted a lot of investments in the last 30 years. Africa is democratic but how come we haven’t attracted much investment?” he pointed out.
Museveni added; “Democracy helps people have a say in how government is run, gives them an opportunity to speak out but by itself it can’t cause socio-economic transformation.”