By Spy Uganda
Fifty years after Ugandan Asians were forced to leave the country by leader Idi Amin, the country’s foreign minister says such decision will never be made again.
“We have expressed our regrets on many occasions and given reassurances that never again will we allow such a thing happen to the Asians or any minority group in our country,” Henry Okello said.
More than 27,000 Asians were expelled by Ugandan dictator Idi Amin in 1972, and thousands settled in Leicester.
Okello says at the time “Indians were the major merchants… every aspect of business belonged to Indians”.
Those expelled have previously complained of lack of adequate compensation by the Ugandan government, but the minister says their lack faith in the new administration was the problem.
“Some did not have faith in the current government and when their properties were given back to them they quickly sold them off for peanuts,” he said.
Okello said there was “a lot that still needs to be done to ensure there is more assimilation of Asians in Uganda” even as cases of mixed marriages grow.
“Things have changed now. Today there’s a new leadership, there’s a new spirit and they should take advantage of it,” he added.
A group of over 200 Asians yesterday held celebrations in Kampala to mark 50yrs since Amin expelled them from Uganda.