Uganda President praises Indian diaspora's role in economic growth at NAM Summit

Indians in Uganda
Indians in Uganda

Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni expressed admiration for the substantial contributions of Indian returnees to his country's economic development, during the 19th Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) Summit in Kampala. Commending their achievements, he highlighted the 900 factories built by Indian returnees since their arrival.

"I was asking people how many factories have been built by our Indian returnees. They told me about the 900 factories that they had built since they came back.", he said.

Reflecting on Uganda's history, especially the expulsion of Asians, mainly Indian Ugandans, during Idi Amin's regime, President Museveni openly acknowledged the government's past mistakes. He highlighted the adverse consequences of Amin's actions, including the economic impact on Uganda. Notably, India had severed ties with Amin's regime during that time.

President Museveni expressed regret for the lost opportunities for growth and development during the tumultuous period, emphasizing the need to study the investment climate in respective countries. He discussed the Ugandan government's measures to rectify past injustices, including returning properties confiscated during Amin's era.

Recognizing India's pivotal role in NAM, President Museveni acknowledged the nation's participation in the inaugural NAM summit in Belgrade in 1961. He highlighted the group's foundation by visionary leaders such as Sukarno of Indonesia, Pt Jawaharlal Nehru of India, Nasser of Egypt, and Chou En Lai of China, representing 4.46 billion people globally.

Nearly 52 years after Ugandan dictator Idi Amin expelled the Indian community of his country, President of Uganda Yoweri Museveni called that move a “mistake” and expressed gratitude to the Indian community of Uganda for the service that they rendered over the decades.

The first summit of NAM took place in Belgrade, Yugoslavia, in 1961 and was attended by: Afghanistan, Algeria, Burma, Cambodia, Ceylon, Congo, Cuba, Cyprus, Ethiopia, Ghana, Guinea, India, Indonesia, Iraq, Lebanon, Mali, Morocco, Nepal, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Sudan, Tunisia, United Arab Republic, Yemen and Yugoslavia, the President of Uganda said. The Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) is a forum of 120 countries that are not formally aligned with or against any major power bloc. It was founded with the view to advancing interests of developing countries in the context of Cold War confrontation. After the United Nations, it is the largest grouping of states worldwide.



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