By Hanning Mbabazi
Kampala: The President of Uganda Yoweri Kaguta Museveni has urged Commonwealth countries to use their numbers to mutually promote investments, and work together on security and cultural exchanges.
The president was speaking at the opening of the 64th Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference (CPC) at Speke Resort Munyonyo on Thursday, 26 September 2019.
“The population of the commonwealth is 2.5 billion. That is a third of humanity. This is a phenomenon of great potential if it is properly used,” Museveni said.
Museveni tasked the delegates to examine the options on trade without disturbing the Common Free Trade Area (CFTA) arrangements in Africa.
“Can we revive the preferential trade arrangement? Here in Africa, we are now committed to the CFTA, COMESA and EAC,” Museveni said adding: ‘What preferential commercial arrangement could Africa have with the UK, France or Portugal. Of course we have some arrangements with the EU that includes France.”
President Museveni underscored the need for commonwealth countries to peacefully work together with all countries irrespective of their internal social-systems for mutual advantage and on the basis of respecting the sovereignty of each country.
“Egocentrism, greed and bigotry should be banished since colonialism has been defeated,” Museveni said.
The President also highlighted the benefits of promoting scientific innovations.
“The advances in science and technology have always been the primers of change for good or evil; but this time insisting that those advances are only for good and never for evil,” he said.
Museveni asked delegates to agree on a joint action on tackling climate change.