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End of a year, start of another: Why you should be interested

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A United Nations soldier stands on guard as civilians arrive

A United Nations soldier stands on guard as civilians arrive at the United Nations Mission in Juba. NET PHOTO 

By John K. Abimanyi

Posted  Monday, December 30   2013 at  02:00

In Summary

For that old bad habit you have wanted to stop but have not found the energy to do so, that really nice activity you have wanted to start doing but have somehow always managed not to do, the start of a new year offers a chance to refresh the page and write a completely new chapter.

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Today is the second last day of this year. There will be no other 2013. In effect, it is only a change of numbers, really; the sun will still rise from east next week. You, however, could choose to make it more than just a change of digits. Breaks such as these: the start of a new day, week, or month, or season, offer a good psychological opportunity to mark turnarounds.

For that old bad habit you have wanted to stop but have not found the energy to do so, that really nice activity you have wanted to start doing but have somehow always managed not to do, the start of a new year offers a chance to refresh the page and write a completely new chapter.
Also, it would be nice to reflect on those parts about being Ugandan that brought us collective gross national shame this year, and, what you could do, in your small way, to stop them. We could take bribing as an example.

One would hope against hope that somewhere in your resolutions this coming year would be to never again, pay out a bribe. You can bet that if you and everybody else around you did so, the country will be all the happier for it. And yes, on that very hopeful note, a happy new year, to one and all.

South Sudan crisis

The South Sudan crisis seems to be brewing into more than just skirmishes, but something teetering along the fault lines of an all-out civil war. And not only is the threat just a civil war anymore, it is a civil war that has all the definitions of ethnic cleansing written all over it.

Some people have a word for this kind of thing, where members of a specific ethnic group are attacked by members of another; that word is “genocide”. Now mediation efforts, especially by regional leaders, have risen a notch higher; so there is hope that some sort of peace to come out of this.

There had better be; South Sudan is not just a neighbour. It is a market, from which Ugandan produce finds the much-needed legal tender that helps to pay bills home.
Even the taxman would catch a cold if the receipts he earns from the cross border trade and commerce with South Sudan, suddenly dried up. It cannot be emphasised enough, that a peaceful South Sudan is in the best interest of Uganda.