By Spy Uganda
President Yoweri Museveni has expressed the need to Fast Track Economic integration in order to facilitate the modern prosperity of the African people.
This was top on the agenda in the talks held between himself and his host H.E Abdelmadjid Tebboune at the Presidential palace in Algiers, Sunday morning.
Gen. Museveni noted that Modern prosperity is based on the production and sale of goods and services, a reason why since 1980 through the Lagos Plan of Action, African leaders realized the issue of economic integration.
“This has taken a long time but we are moving steadily. We have now agreed on the Continental Free Trade Area-CFTA,” Gen Museveni said, underscoring the need to have continental security.
“But in order for that to happen, you must have peace on the continent and that’s why therefore the discussion between His Excellency and myself focused on the issue of peace in Africa,’ H.E Museveni added.
The President said this should be followed by infrastructural development and commended Algeria for having moved ahead on that front by building communication linkages through the Sahara to West Africa.
“That’s a very positive contribution. I hope a railway system will be built between North Africa (Maghreb) and West Africa because that one will make trade much easier,” H.E Museveni further noted, adding that Uganda and Algeria have got the same ideas on economic integration.
He however underscored the need to boost Africa’s purchasing power with an expected population of 25 billion people by 2050, up from the current 1.5 billion people. President Museveni was happy to learn, that like Uganda, Algeria’s imports have drastically reduced from 62 million dollars to 32 million dollars.
“The problem of Africa is ideological and strategic and I’m glad Algeria is in the way Uganda also thinks. Therefore, in Algeria, we have got reliable partners,” he said.
On his part, the President of the People’s Democratic Republic of Algeria, H.E Abdelmadjid Tebboune welcomed his Ugandan counterpart Yoweri Museveni and promised continued good working relations between the two countries.
“I want to welcome you to Algeria and thank you for honoring our invitation. Our relationship has intensified.
Your visit is an opportunity to continue working together to develop our bilateral relations through exploiting opportunities the two countries have to offer,” H.E Abdelmadjid said.
He pledged his support to Uganda in hosting the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) conference next year 2024 in Kampala.
The Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) is a forum of 120 countries that are not formally aligned with or against any major power bloc. After the United Nations, it is the largest grouping of states worldwide.
The two Presidents witnessed the signing of memoranda of understanding and agreements between the two countries.
The MOUs included one between Uganda National Oil Company (UNOC) and Sonatrach of Algeria, others in the areas of Tourism, Trade, Education and Scientific Research and energy.
The agreements signed included agriculture and animal health.
Earlier, President Museveni who is on his second working visit to the people’s republic of Algeria visited the Military Museum of Algeria and commended the North African nation for fighting colonialism adding that the whole of Africa had been colonized by 1900 except for Ethiopia.
“So, the people of Algeria by taking up arms in 1954 and sustaining the struggle, is a very big salutation. You used your struggle very well to defeat them and that became a lesson for the other Africans. So, we salute the Algerian people not only for fighting for freedom but for remaining free even after independence,” Gen Museveni said.
The Museum manages, coordinates, controls the works, preserves and exhibits all the objects that concern the Algerian Military History.
He also visited the Martyrs’ monument which was opened in 1982 to honor the 20th anniversary of Algeria’s brutal and bloody war for independence. This impressive concrete monument is a testament to the country’s long struggle to defeat colonialism.