By Our Reporter
Government is to put in place a legal framework that will see Ugandans living outside the country vote in general elections.
This was confirmed by the vice president Edward Kiwanuka Ssekandi at the opening of the Uganda North American Association Convention (UNAA) in America over the weekend.
Ssekandi confirmed that government is planning to establish a fully-fledged department in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs which will exclusively handle diaspora matters.
‘A legal framework to support the National Diaspora Policy will soon be put in place for the promotion of dual citizenship and extension of voting rights and participation in the local electoral process” The Vice president noted.
Ssekandi also added that there is need to involve the Ugandans living abroad in the national planning process by creating platforms to enable them take part in national development and policy formulation.
He further called upon the diaspora community to invest in Uganda since there is a lot of potential and market access.
“There is need for you to appreciate the reasons for investing in Uganda, now that it is a liberalised economy. Government encourages Private Public Partnerships in that regard and this networking will avail great opportunities which Ugandans in the diaspora can exploit” He added.
He however promised that government would also make available diaspora loans and forex accounts and also observe the diaspora week every year.
The Ugandan North America Association has held annual conventions over 20 different states in the United States of America. The association is this year celebrating 25 years of existence with the theme ‘Harnessing the power of the diaspora’. The convention is being attended by over 1000 delegates from North America, Europe and Africa. Several Ministers, MPs and other government and business people from Uganda are also in attendance.