Phillippians; Chapter 4, verse 6 says do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.
It is with the same zeal that Busoga leaders under their umbrella association Busoga Consortium have just completed a week of prayer ostensibly to beseech God to deliver reconciliation, peace and help to end the jinx of poverty that has plagued the region for decades. This is indeed a welcome move and one of the greatest initiatives the Busoga Consortium has come up with.
History is full of people and society who upon suffering tribulation called upon God in prayer and were delivered. But as we pray to God, we also need to remember that the same Bible in Thessalonians; Chapter 3, verse 10 says that if a man will not work, he shall not eat. It is, therefore, incumbent upon our leaders to urge our people not only to pray but also to work hard.
A combination of hard work and prayer will surely deliver the region from the pangs of poverty. Busoga is one of the richest regions in the country in terms of natural resource. The fertile soils, relatively flat land and its location on the shores of lake Victoria make the region a real freak of nature.
It is, therefore, ironical that the same region is ranked among the poorest in the country. There must be a problem, besides prayer, that our leaders must diagnose. We have seen young people sell their ancestral land in villages to buy motorcycles for boda-boda business.
We have also seen several young people hiring out land to sugarcane growers for a few quid while many young people roam trading centres in Busoga’s peri-urban areas wasting a lot of time discussing European football and comparing rich people, instead of working for their future.
Our women also top fertility rankings while the men are busy siring children like there is no tomorrow. These, coupled with infighting among our political elite, are among the many factors that have turned Busoga into the headquarters of poverty as one famous politician retorted. Until we fold our sleeves and confront these problems head-on, we may drown ourselves in prayer but get nothing in return.
So far, on the unity front, the prayer week has done a tremendous job. It is always great seeing erstwhile enemies dining on the same table and sipping from the cup of unity. The Consortium should, therefore, use the same energy to encourage our people to work hard so that they emerge out of poverty.