Tuesday 30 April 2013


The Constitutional Square re-development project which never was - courtesy of Hon. Bidandi Ssali.

The New Vision, Friday, September 28, 2001 - published the impression of The Constitutional Square re - development project which never was. Hon. Jaberi Bidandi Ssali is credited to have come out openly and said NO to the de - development effort. It was nor easy given the standing of the promoter - Hassan Bassajjabalaba, but Bidandi prevailed. Hopefully Kampala City Council is in possession of the title to the Square.

Given that the Constitutional Square is currently out of bounds even to blood donors! there is need for prayers that re-development strategies don't come in the near future when not directly driven by KCCA.

William Kituuka Kiwanuka

Redevelopment of Constitutional Square Foiled by Ministry of Local Government
With only seven months to the much-anticipated Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting, the planned redevelopment of the main geographical landmark in Kampala, the Constitutional Square, hangs in balance.
The then Mayor of Kampala, Nasser Ntege Ssebagala, had announced that Balton Uganda Limited, a subsidiary of Britain's Balton CP Limited, had been contracted to redevelop the Constitutional Square. Ssebagala blocked attempts by the LC3 chairperson of Kampala Central Division, Godfrey Nyakaana, to plant trees and flowers at the Constitutional Square, arguing that Kampala City Council had alternative plans for the area.
The Town Clerk of Kampala, Ruth Kijjambu, told Uganda Radio Network that shortly before the 150 million-dollar deal was finalized with Balton, the Ministry of Local Government intervened in the matter, directing that a meeting be held to discuss the agreement. She said that the meeting has not been convened and the beautification of the Constitutional Square was behind schedule.
Kijjambu said KCC would have wished to start on the redevelopment of the Constitutional Square several months ago, but its hands are tied by Government bureaucracy and a lack of funds.
According to the proposal fronted by Balton, the new-look Constitutional Square would have a water fountain as its main feature in the middle. It would also have an information centre, modern toilets, parking space, a green belt and flowers.
As this project stalls, KCC is turning its sights to other projects. It is to spend one billion shillings to beautify the Entebbe Road ahead of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting.
The Town Clerk said Government had approved the disbursement of the funds for planting flowers and grass and repairing broken pavements, particularly from the Kibuye roundabout to the Clock Tower. She said KCC had proposed a list of four companies to be granted the deal through a selective bidding process.
Kijjambu refuses to disclose the names of the proposed companies, which will be vetted by the Ministry of Local Government.


After he was appointed Junior Minister of Finance, Hon. Isaac Musumba realized that Members of Parliament wanted an increase in their package.  He smartly talked to the Desk Officer in the Ministry of Finance.  The Officer was able to help Musumba get the required strategy to raise the matter in Parliament.  The Treasury officers in Finance were taken by surprise on learning what Hon. Musumba had done, and the MPs were able to authorize an increment in their total package.

As the officers had no way of handling the Minister, they followed up to the Desk officer, and it was by grace of God that the officer was not dismissed!

William Kituuka Kiwanuka


The dilemma of pregnant women and male midwives

A male midwife carries an inspection on a pregnant woman during an antenatal visit to a health centre.
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A male midwife carries an inspection on a pregnant woman during an antenatal visit to a health centre. Photo by Gawaya Tegulle 
By Gawaya Tegulle

Posted  Monday, April 29  2013 at  01:00
In Summary
Midwives are mostly women and since they deal with issues related to pregnancy, expectant mothers are usually comfortable being handled by them. But with men also becoming nurses and midwives, it poses unique challenges.
The women of Agung Village, Todora Parish, Anaka Sub-County in Nwoya District must think twice or plan ahead of schedule when they will go into labour, because they are not at liberty to entertain labour pains at any time.
With only one health worker within a radius of 30km, who is both nurse and midwife, and has other important duties (all of them legitimate) to attend to, the choice of when to go into labour is completely out of the women’s hands. And for good measure the nurse-cum-midwife is a man.
Mr Wildred Adot carries the weight and hopes of an entire village on his shoulders. In essence he is the health centre and when he is away, the entire Todora Health Centre II is effectively “under look”.
As an Enrolled Comprehensive Nurse, Adot is trained and equipped to administer antenatal care, family planning service, delivery, post-natal care and general treatment. But he too gets ill and fails to report for duty from time to time. When that happens, the entire hinterland must wait for him to get better, or look for alternatives a long distance away.
Not a good option in a rural area where roads are bad and travel does not come cheap, especially when you have a pregnant woman on your hands who must get to the labour suite very quickly.
The fact that he is a man does complicate things quite a bit, because many women have a problem with this. However, the ladies have no choice as he is a ‘monopoly’ of sorts, they have nowhere else to go.
No choice
Today is a day for antenatal visit at the health centre. Martha, a middle-aged mother is awaiting her turn but she is clearly apprehensive and shares her concern. “I am a grown up woman, how can I be touched by a young man like this one? How will I come here to deliver when I have to open my legs before a man who is not my husband?” she asks. Then, a look of resignation crosses her face. “There are things that can only be told to a woman, not a man. But I have no choice, as the other place I could have gone to is far off and I do not have the money or energy to go there,” she concludes.
At that moment she is called in to the examination room. Hand on hips, look of despair on her face, she gets up and reluctantly walks onto the bed, and lies down with a sigh. Of the women waiting, three or four others express similar reservations but still stay in the line, knowing their options are limited.
Male midwives appear to be a sensitive issue in the Greater North and no matter how efficient they may be, it does seem to be making the lives of many pregnant women quite difficult.
For many of them, it is the ultimate humiliation. Another reason why some continue to prefer Traditional Birth Attendants (TBAs), never mind that they were disbanded by government or that it is a risky venture.
Diana Nassozi, a Community Resource Person (CRP) in Oyam District, narrates that at the Health Centre II in Adyegi Parish, apart from having no maternity ward, which is a big problem in itself, it has a male midwife whom some women fear to approach. In an area where certain traditions are firmly entrenched, many women will still think twice about being naked before a man other than their husband.
“Some women fear him, so they have to go to Aber Missionary Hospital, which is far away and moreover where they also have to pay,” says Nassozi. “The HC II next to them is free of charge, but they’d rather pay at the missionary hospital than undress before a male midwife.”
Grace Aloka, a CRP in Aber, Oyam District, says some women like the male midwives for one good reason: “They handle women with a lot of love and care. They do not abuse the mothers and they are very gentle.”
No choice
But this seems to be the exception rather than the rule. The scenario calls for a gender-sensitive approach to health staffing, especially in rural areas where health workers are few and women often have no choice.
In attempt to stem the crisis occasioned by shortage of health workers, some NGOs have invested in some of the communities. The Health Rights Action Group (HAG) and the Action Group for Health, Human Rights and HIV/Aids (AGHA) have began working with the District Local Governments, health centres and local communities in four districts of Greater North – Amuru, Nwoya, Oyam and Soroti.
Reach out
One of the innovations has involved the use of CRPs, who are selected from Village Health Teams (VHTs) and given special training to help in outreaches to pregnant women, at least once or twice every month. The VHTs are established by national policy and do exist – at least in theory – in every village. It is out of these that HAG and AGHA have trained CRPs and facilitated them to reach out to certain health categories, especially pregnant women.
In the village of Agung, HAG and AGHA pay for a midwife (female) from Anaka Hospital–the biggest hospital for miles around–to attend these outreaches and talk to the pregnant women and offer antenatal advice after thorough checks.
This not only alleviates the burden that Mr. Adot has to shoulder everyday, it also helps those who are shy to attend antenatal care administered by a man to get reprieve. The monthly outreaches take place in various locations in the district; like Alero, Koch Goma, Purongo and Anaka - but not everywhere, owing to limited funds available to the NGOs. HAG and AGHA facilitate qualified midwives to attend to women in or near their homes.


May 1st is International Labour Day, a day which commemorates a time of civil unrest in the late 19th century when workers in industrialized countries demonstrated for improved working conditions, wage raises and the establishment of a maximum working day and week. Many of the demonstrations were suppressed with force.

The conditions for workers in Uganda are not something to talk about since the NRM caught power in 1986.  The problem has all along been president Museveni’s wrong vision for the country.  This ill advised vision has seen brains migrate to greener pastures as Museveni decided to invest in wars to remove leaders of neighbouring countries among other region conflicts.  People have been well trained, but unfortunately, the looters of the national treasury have taken the cake that would reward the hard work of the skilled worker and what we continue to see is migration of labour many of whom are beneficiary of state sponsorship.  The matter has not been made better by salary scales which are upside down!  While some executives earn about shs 25 million a month, many senior people are paid peanuts, which is very demoralizing. 

The decentralization has not helped matters.  Corrupt politicians are party to policies and decisions that demoralize the technical manpower.  Everything is a mess in Uganda!

What my save the Uganda worker as of now is the peaceful exist of President Museveni, short of that, sorry!   

Museveni’s way of doing things unfortunately is self defeating.  He is now the chief pay officer, who decided to make a double pay to Members of parliament when they have already been paid for the work, while other salaried Government officers have no salary and motivation at all.

President Museveni is a road block to any meaningful reforms in Government, hence the reason we see that one proposal for increased revenue is increased tax rates!  While, adjustments in Government and stopping the thieving can do a lot for the ruined economy.

As Uganda Workers Mourn may 1st, the only prayer remains for the NRm organ to see sense and devise means of seeing Museveni retire, short of that, no hope for the Ugandan worker!

William Kituuka Kiwanuka

Challenges of retaining health workers in the PNFP Sector:
The Case of Uganda

Catholic Health Network

Sam Orochi Orach - Asst. Executive Secretary, Uganda Catholic Medical Bureau

Shortage of human resource for health poses a major challenge to achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). Uganda is among the 57 countries with human resource shortage reaching critical level. But the situation is even worse at micro levels. The private-no-for-profit (PNFP) health sub-sector complements government efforts to achieve the MDG, the health sector strategic plan II (HSSP II) and the health related poverty eradication plan (PEAP) indicators.

Uganda Catholic Medical Bureau coordinates the Roman Catholic health facilities network, one of the three PNFP networks in Uganda. This paper looks at the HRH crisis as experienced by the UCMB network giving the trend, examining the reasons, the destinations of attrition cases and what the network is trying to do to improve human resource stability. The information is based on quarterly reports received by the bureau from its affiliated health facilities.

Uganda is among the 57 countries with critical shortage of health workforce (The World Health Report 2006). The high burden of disease, including HIV/AIDS, requires scale up of some of the most labor-demanding interventions. The lean health workforce experiences heavy pressure to implement increasing range of services within the national minimum health care package (UMHCP) and meet the targets for the Health Sector Strategic Plan II, the Poverty Eradication Plan (PEAP) and the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). There is also pressure to see further downward trend in the HIV prevalence. It has been estimated that the scale up of antiretroviral therapy (ART) alone in Uganda between 2005 and 2012 would demand a doubling or tripling in staff time given to ART (Rudolf Chandler and Stephen Musau, 2004). To scale up anti-retroviral therapy alone to meet the PEPFAR target would require about 10% of Uganda’s doctor workforce as at 2004 level (Smith O. 2004).

But scale-up of ART in Uganda has even moved faster than originally planned while health workforce remained almost unchanged.  This disproportionate growth in service demand and the skewing of health workforce deployment in favour of few diseases conditions worsen the functional gap in respect to implementing the range of services in UMHCP. But this is worsened by a workforce that is increasingly becoming unstable.   
Retention of Health Workers Health worker instability is worsened by, among others, internal and external movements or losses. HIV is reported to be the leading cause of health worker attrition in developing countries (WHO 2007; EQUINET AND HST 2004). Death, for example, in 10 years accounted for 30% of the 1984 cohort of Ugandan medical school graduates, 50% of which was due to HIV (Yoswa M Dambisya, 2004). But at a cross-sectional level the main reason for internal and external movements of Ugandan health workers is “poor working condition” (Charles W. Matsiko and Julie Kiwanuka, 2003), which often simply means poor pay. There is also desire to move out of rural to urban areas. These affect both the public and the not-for-profit (PNFP) sectors.


A few days ago, some gentleman while on talk show expressed concern about rats which he saw while caring for his daughter at Mulago hospital.  He said the rats could come out of hiding at night and those who sleep on the floor did not have nice time with them!  He also talked about the sharing of toilet facilities by men and women due to the faulty toilet facilities.

Mulago is a big institution.  We are grateful to the staff who do whatever is possible in the circumstances to save lives.  the appeal is to the administration to fix what can be fixed like toilet facilities and killing rodents.

William Kituuka Kiwanuka

Monday 29 April 2013


Mayambala Sebaggala Mohammed succumbed to a Brain Tumor a few days after an operation at International Hospital Kampala (IHK) on Friday, April 26, 2013 at around 8.00 am.  He was born in 1963 and had been diagnosed as a Brain Tumor Patient at Mulago Referral Hospital.  It was agreed to have him admitted at IHK where he underwent the operation to remove the tumor.  Unfortunately, Allah decided otherwise, and he breathed his last a few days after the operation which still under intensive care.

Condolences to the bereaved family given the early departure of their lovely and jolly father, grandfather, and uncle.  It is difficult time they are going through and need a lot of prayers.

Mayambala's case is one of the many that call for support.  When the family got a bill of over shs 20 m, the strategy was to look for the money.  It was not easy paying the balance before the body was released.  What this brings to the fore is the need to have institutions where Health Insurance is responsible in paying the hospital dues such that family members don't get a big problem raising the money and having to suffer the  torture of paying the balance only to recover a dead body!     

What the Quran says about death
The origin of death: change of state when Adam and Eve ate from the forbidden tree, even though they were forgiven: “In the earth you will live, and in it you will die.” Qur’an 7:24

The will of God: “It is not possible for a soul to die except with the permission of God at a term set down on record.” Qur’an 3:139

 “When their time comes they cannot delay it for a single hour nor can they bring it forward by a single hour.” Qur'an 16:61

The only guarantee that comes along with birth is death. “To God we belong and to Him is our return” Qur’an 2:156

What does Islam teach about life after death?
It teaches that a human being not only has a body, but also has a 'spirit' given to him or her by God. The spirit is the seed from which a higher form of life grows within man, higher than physical life, just as the body has developed from a small 'seed'. Just as in the world around us higher forms of life evolve from lower ones, similarly from the life of the individual in this world is evolved his higher 'spiritual' life. During his life, man's deeds shape and mould his spirit, for better or worse, according to his deeds. When a person dies, the physical body is finished, but the spirit remains, as he or she had moulded it by their deeds when alive. That is the life after death.

What is a Tumor?
A tumor is a mass of tissue that's formed by an accumulation of abnormal cells. Normally, the cells in your body age, die, and are replaced by new cells. With cancer and other tumors, something disrupts this cycle. Tumor cells grow, even though the body does not need them, and like normal old cells, they don't die. As this process goes on, the tumor continues to grow as more and more cells are added to the mass.  

William Kituuka Kiwanuka

Sunday 28 April 2013


Information to my desk is that following the cutting of funding to Uganda, the land in Buganda where most development is at least has some relief.  Those who have been getting money from Government are now broke.  The land price has also fallen.

It is now clear that failure to manage funds very well is a virus the NRM Government  has which it has to fight. 

William Kituuka kiwanuka


The Namutamba Community is being informed of the sad news of the death of Maama Miriam Sebutulo.  The Late is mother to among others, Justice Augustine Nsimye.  We join with the family to express our sympathy over that great loss.  Maama Sebutulo educated children who have made sound contribution to the development of Uganda.

According to the burial programme, burial is scheduled at Bulera (Namutamba) and it will start with a Funeral Service at 2pm, Monday, 29th April 2013.

May Maama Miriam Sebutulo's soul rest in eternal peace.

Meanwhile an appeal is made to the family to inform the Namutamba Community about travel arrangements from Kampala which may make it easy for those who may wish to attend.  CBS FM 88.8 is fairly convenient to some of us.

William Kituuka Kiwanuka 

Saturday 27 April 2013


Prince Wasajja marries today

Prince David Wasajja (red coat) with Ms Marion Nankya, flanked by other guests during their introduction ceremony at Nalumunye last year. FILE PHOTO 
By Martin Ssebuyira & Abdul Kiyaga

Posted  Saturday, April 27  2013 at  01:00
The Prince and his fiancee, Ms Marion Nankya will tie the knot at Rubaga Cathedral
Thousands of Buganda historicals, dignitaries and friends will converge at Rubaga Cathedral today to witness Prince David Wasajja exchange vows with fiancée Ms Marion Nankya.
This puts end to questions as to why the 47-year-old had taken long to get married.
When Prince Wasajja announced last year that he would marry Ms Nankya, daughter to Bukoto South MP, Mr Mathias Nsubuga, the Buganda fraternity was excited.
Several artistes offered to compose an official song for the wedding but by Wednesday, the organising committee, led by city businessman Godfrey Kirumira refused it on request of the Prince.
The Prince and his fiancée have been holding a series of bachelor’s parties at Buwama, Club Silk, Amnesia and Guvnor since last Saturday.
“The Prince is going to wed his wife-to-be at Rubaga Cathedral Church at midday. The Kabaka, his (Wasajja) elder brother, will host at least 1,000 invited guests at their ancestral home at Twekobe in Lubiri Mengo,” Mr Charles Peter Mayiga, the Buganda information minister, said.
Mr Mayiga also said the Kampala Archbishop, Dr Cyprian Kizito Lwanga, would officiate at the wedding.
Mr Mayiga said Prince Wasajja was an exemplary leader to the youth whom he had mobilised under the kingdom’s organs.
By Thursday, there was a beehive of activity at Twekobe palace as tents and decorations were being erected for the function.
Gardens were being slashed as different Buganda enthusiasts monitored the preparations.

Thursday 25 April 2013


Stephen Lwalanda the proprietor with Minister Namirembe Bitamazire

Student registration

I was contacted by Lwalanda Stephen for a write up of a project proposal which was letter to become Namulanda Technical Institute (NATI) found along Entebbe Highway. I remember the research I did for the project and interviews of those who are in the technical field.
William Kituuka

Student Leaders swearing in

Namulanda Technical Institute 

In order to mitigate the shortcomings in technical education, NATI shall among other things reach out to secondary schools and interact with students so as to interest them of the technical education and the roles it can play in the development efforts of their country. Girls shall be encouraged as they are equally capable as boys.

Namulanda Technical Institute (NATI) is a Ugandan two billion shillings that is equivalent to US$1,111,111, One million, One hundred eleven thousand One hundred One-project proposal. It is meant to bridge the missing link in the ideal technical training in Uganda, which will see the country produce such technical manpower capable of meeting the challenges of a country that has a vision of industrialization as a development strategy to see it graduate into the ranks of a modernized economy. 

Career Guidance Session

NATI therefore has briefly outlined the salient features that qualify it as an ideal model against the background of what is on ground in the existing technical Institutes in Uganda, hence the cost implication as indicated above with the breakdown at the back of the overview. It is true that anything good has cost implications. 

NATI promoters are feeling the weight and therefore wish to call upon Institutions/people of good will to whom some of the burden can be offloaded to eventually have the dream come true of training manpower capable of the challenges of globalization and the development initiatives of Uganda in its vision of modernization. 

NATI's mission is to empower individuals through the Provision of Employable Skills and to Provide Skilled Workforce for the economy 


Students of Namulanda Technical Institute
The small class sizes mean individual attention, enabling you to become competent and to work at your own speed in a relaxed and friendly atmosphere. If you are a professional already in the building trade wishing to extend your knowledge to other areas, or a beginner doing your own home repairs, you are sure to find a course here to suit you. 


The Institute admits S4 and S6 (O and A level) certificate holders with good passes in English Language, Mathematics, Physics and Chemistry and shall offer courses in: 
• Motor Vehicle Mechanics 
• Electrical Installation 
• Bricklaying and Concrete practice 
• Carpentry and Joinery 
• Plumbing in Tropical Countries 
• Business Education 
For the first year, 60 students shall be admitted per course and the institute shall have 3 terms a year. In the second year of operation, there shall be first years and second year Students. 
The incorporation of Business Education/studies in the training curriculum is aimed at developing quality of life of trainees so that they can be creative and self reliant, hence equipping them with basic entrepreneurial competencies. 

Whatever activities will be done at the institute, it will be the practice to ensure that they do not have a negative impact on the environment. Trees shall be planted to counter soil erosion as well as discourage circumstances that can induce desertification among other things. Oil and other input in he training shall have to be discharged in such a way that will not impact negatively on the environment, and Students shall be taught to endeavor to keep their workplaces environmentally friendly so as not to contribute to its degradation by virtual of their activities. 
Developed nations have identified renewable energies as a viable option in the global transition to economically viable and environmentally sustainable energy sources. NATI will endeavor to borrow from their experiences and where possible work in collaboration with Renewable Energy Centres in the world to promote these energies as part of the Curricula so that students on graduation are able to disseminate those technologies and also handle the mechanics associated. 


Administration Office

Namulanda Technical Institute (NATI) is on Block 383- Busiro, land situated at Kabulamuliro of 2.83 Hactares with Registered Proprietor as Stephen Lwalanda. This is 12 miles Entebbe Road in Wakiso District - Uganda


The 1st Director of Kajjansi Progressive School - Rebeccah Nsangi

The premises which gave birth to the current Kajjansi Progressive School

Madam Rebeccah Nsangi is one of those fortunate people. In 1991, she was a teacher at Kitende Secondary School as well as part timer at Kajjansi College which I had started. The school had problems and I gave to her what I had at hand given the circumstances. Rebeccah started in a simple way, but the gods were with her, things worked out and she owns a big school at Lweza - Kajjansi by the name - Kajjansi Progressive.

William Kituuka Kiwanuka

Wednesday 24 April 2013


Madam Allen Kagina, I wish to thank you for the efforts at Uganda Revenue Authority (URA) since 1992, which saw you rise to ranks of Commissioner General in 2004.  You are known as a hands – on Manager who has been able to transform the tax body into a more effective organization.  You are credited for cleaning the image of URA.  You are amiable, eloquent and cerebral, a highly rated manager internationally.

The question raised is why has your organization miss handled the Pioneer Buses issue?  Madam, you must have been old enough when NRM captured power in 1986.  There were UTC and People’s bus companies, which due to miss management ceased to exist.  There were patriotic Ugandans who were concerned with public transport given the exploitation by ‘matatu’ operators, over time; they were able to get the deal through of having Pioneer buses on Uganda roads.  You ought to be aware that these people did not have ready cash to pay for the buses, but got involved with a number of financial institutions and the 100 buses were delivered.  We are informed that there were issues that KCCA and other authorities were supposed to see sorted to see to the effective operations of these buses.  Instead, these issues were not handled as expected, meaning that shortcomings were expected in the business.  However, it is also true that the company tried its level best to meet the obligation of transporting people, many of whom have since suffered your mis-advised action of having them off the road over the alleged shs 8bn tax obligation.

Madam Kagina, you should realize the gravity of your impunity to the people of Uganda.  Much as you are in-charge of the tax body, deals like that of Pioneer Buses are very crucial for the future of the backward and poverty ridden Uganda, where you are Commissioner General.  The other day, when President Museveni took a sack of shs 250m to Kamuli, it was news to the whole world.  What you as an executive is doing to Pioneer buses will in the future make it impossible to get such consignments on such credit terms.  What do you think about the banks which advanced the shareholders money?  We need to be more reasonable in the decisions we make.  Many are not simply routine; we have to exercise a lot of care.  Madam, while you enjoy the comfort of your  executive office, with millions in salary and allowances, you are simply unconcerned about that peasant who was saving by travelling using the Pioneer Buses, who has to pay in one route the amount that Pioneer buses would have charged the two routes!  You are not bothered about the pay of the 200 or so drivers who were having sure daily living by driving the buses.  You are not concerned about the 200 or so staff that were employed as stewards by the bus company.  

It is wrong to tag the proposed auctioning of the buses to the shs 8 bn owed in Government taxes.  The buses I wish to inform you were having tax revenue to Government due to fuel consumed, whatever the employees buy there is tax.  What failed you as the tax body to see some party ensure that monies earned by the company were well handled with the basic objective as recovering the monies due to those who financed the deal?

I am made to imagine that may be the organization is influenced by the company competitors such that they place Pioneer on the wall which decision has proved very illogical, and the best it is reversed.  It does not make any economic sense for URA to keep Pioneer buses parked as people suffer to get transport as may be over 500 people are denied of income including tax lost if the buses were burning fuel daily.  The tax body should stop giving the excuse of the shs 8bn owed to it by the company.  Just have the buses on road and see that they met the liability to pay the suppliers or else, the tax body in claiming shs 8bn may make Ugandans pay over shs 100bn as liability due to these buses.

My opinion is that Madam Kagina if you cannot see Pioneer Buses back to raod as soon as possible, kindly resign.
Thank you very much.

William Kituuka Kiwanuka



The Science of Delivering Online IDs to a Billion People: The Aadhaar Experience

DATE: Wednesday, April 24, 2013 TIME: 9:00 – 10:30 a.m. (13:00 – 14:30 GMT or convert time) LOCATION: Online and World Bank Headquarters in Washington, DC
As part of the Bank's Development Economics Lecture series, Nandan Nilekani, one of the world's leading entrepreneurs in information technology, will speak on Aadhaar, India's massive initiative to create a unique system for the biometric identification of its residents. Aadhaar has already assigned 12 digit identification numbers to over 300 million people and will eventually enrol all of India's 1.2 billion residents.
Senior Vice President and Chief Economist Kaushik Basu will chair, introducing the speaker, the topic and its implications for development. World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim will deliver opening remarks and comment on the importance of the subject to the World Bank Group. Questions and answers will follow Mr. Nilekani's talk.
The Unique Identification Authority of India created the system with an open programmable interface so that multiple applications can be built. The first major application Direct Benefits Transfer will electronically distribute money to millions of people by the end of 2013. Over the next few years a large number of applications providing transformational benefits to residents of India are expected to be developed by public and private entities.
The Aadhaar initiative uses the most sophisticated technology (Internet class architecture, multi-modal biometrics, ubiquitous data connectivity, tablets, etc.) to solve the most basic of development challenges. The project is being implemented as an open ecosystem, where enrollment will drive applications, and more applications will drive enrollment. The Aadhaar project is an example of doing a very large development project which requires, scale, speed, quality, and low costs goals to be met.