lundi 9 janvier 2017

Open Letter to His Excellence Mr. Yoweri Museveni Kaguta, president of Uganda.

 


Your Excellency,

        
It is fear in the belly that I have respectfully addressed you this open letter, since I have just learned that Uganda has decided to engage in Nuclear.
        
According to a report by the Ministry of Energy, the regions where the precious mineral is located cover 18,000 km2 in the Buganda-Toro region, 12,000 km2 in the Karagwe-Ankole area, 900 km2 between Lake Albert and the Lake Kyoga, 5,000 km2 around Lake Edward, and 900 km2 on the high plateau of Buhwezu.
        
According to the Minister of Energy, it was only in a small part of these regions that mineral concessions were granted to local and foreign companies. New geological surveys are underway, which could lead to the discovery of other uranium deposits.
        
It appears that Uganda has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Russia, on the construction of several nuclear power plants to be fed by national uranium resources. Sarah Nafuna, director of the Nuclear Energy Unit (N.E.U.), the Uganda Nuclear Regulatory Authority, said that your government has identified Lamwo (11,300 Acholis), northern Mubende (21,699 inhabitants), The west of the country, Buyende (191,300 inhabitants), in the east, and Nakasongola (163,600 inhabitants), in the Center, as potential receiving areas for reactors and nuclear power plants.

Your Excellency,

        
When Rwanda was invited to sign the agreement of A.E.L.E. to adopt nuclear power, I was among the first to protest and demonstrate how absurd and extremely dangerous this step was for a young man who must manage his territorial space sparingly and rigorously. Today Rwanda is acclaimed in the world for its commitment to the exploitation and use of renewable energies (methane gas, solar energy, wind power, hydroelectric power, thermal energy, etc.). Why would my country of origin Uganda not follow the example of Rwanda when it has more space, more resources and more financial resources?

It is as Ugandan that I write these lines to you!

        
Indeed before arbitrarily fixing the international borders between Rwanda, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Uganda, my great grandfather Rubanzangabo was the representative of the Mwami Musinga Yuhi V (1944) in the Bufumbira region. It is always with pride that I sit under his ficus under the volcano Muhabura.
        
In addition my mother was born in the vicinity of Kisoro, where she came at the age of three to move to Jomba with her mother after the death of her father who had just died from exhaustion and malaria on a British colonial railway yard in Uganda. Jomba, the part of this area where there was less forced labor, returned to the Belgians in 1923. But my family remained attached to Uganda.
        
So, as they say in Africa, I listen to you as a big brother and I am proud of your decisions when it comes to resolving issues in the Kigezi district. So I do not have any complexity, when I speak to you because I am sure you will kindly take my advice on a project that is highly dangerous for the future of Uganda. I trust in the wisdom of your intelligence and experience.

Excellency, Mr. Chairman,

        
On November 11, 2016, I voted "No" to the untimely exit of the nuclear pat the Switzerland, proposed by the ecological party. My vote does not express my refusal to see my country of adoption Switzerland give up definitively Nuclear, but because the definitive dismantling of a nuclear power plant costs more than the installation of a new plant. The dismantling of a single plant costs more than US $ 300 million per nuclear reactor, which needs to be updated and integrated into the operating accounts at a rate of 5% per year! And this dismantling spreads over at least 20 years. In addition it involves the dismantling of sites, the decontamination of sites and entire areas (at least 30 km2), the treatment and burial of highly radioactive waste for centuries.
         More than one million people must be evacuated. In addition, nuclear power must be replaced by clean and renewable sources of energy (solar, hydro, wind, etc.), which even a rich country like Switzerland can not afford in record time. Switzerland is therefore obliged to wait until the year 2050 to finally abandon nuclear power if it does not want to import from abroad the electricity required for its daily consumption and to make its citizens pay the cost of dismantling of its power plants.

Is Uganda really ready to exploit pitchblende or uranite (uranium dioxide)?

         The pitchblende means "mineral of misfortune" in German "pech (bearer of bad luck) and blende (" ore ").
Do I remind you that the Polish woman Marie Curie born Sklodowska (Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1911), who discovered radium and Polonium in 1898, died of cancer in the end his life only by manipulating the rock containing the " Uranium (UO2) "extracted from the Jachymov (or Joachmsthal) deposit in the Czech Republic.
         It is from this deposit of Saint Joachimsthal that was extracted until 1982, 6,000 tons of metal used for the Soviet nuclear program. The political prisoners of the Communist regime subjected to forced labor perished by mass on the site. Why did not the Russians continue to extract the Pechblende from Jachymov?
         Closer to Uganda, why do not the Westerners (Belgians, Americans, French ...) exploit the pitchblende of the Shikolobwe mine in the Democratic Republic of Congo from which was extracted the 500 tons (by L ' Union Minière du Haut Katanga) that were used for the Manhattan atomic bomb project launched on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in August 1945? In return, the Democratic Republic of the Congo has maintained, since 1945, an obsolete and visibly dangerous nuclear installation at Mount Amba on the heights of Kinshasa. A nuclear bomb capable of erasing Kinshasa and Brazzaville from the earth's surface in a few hours, if one is careful.

Your Excellency,

         In a few words, I have just demonstrated to you the danger of the extraction of the Pitchblende "ore of misfortune." I could have continued by telling you about the dangers of radioactivity surrounding the exploitation of uranium.
         You know very well that the site of Arlit 375 Km2 in full desert is located 250 Km from Agadès! The Uranium mines of Husab (Rossing) and Trekkopje (Areva) are located in the desert of Namib respectively at 70 km from the town of Aramis and Trekkopje, the mine closed since October 12, 2012, due to the collapse of the world price of uranium fell after the Fukushima nuclear disaster is located 300 km south of Windhoek.

Excellency, Mr. Chairman,


         Uganda needs neither to exploit the Pitchblende, nor to sell it, let alone use Uranium to produce electricity on its territory. It has a diversity of energy sources not yet exploited.
         At the time of writing this letter, I was pleasantly surprised by the inauguration in December 2016 of the first solar power plant in Uganda at Soroti. With a capacity of 10 MW, which will power low-carbon electricity to 40,000 homes. It is apparently the largest solar power plant in East Africa. Can not ask the French companies Eren and Dubaïrote Access Power to build another ten or more?
         Do you know what makes me happy, when I observe the installation of the Soroti power plant? It is to see these Ugandan workers who install the 32,000 solar panels with bare hands without special combination and masks, as for the installation of a nuclear power plant! This technological jewel of renewable and clean energy cost only US $ 19 million. A trifle compared to a nuclear power plant!
         This program, launched by the German development bank KfW in partnership with the Uganda Electricity Regulatory Agency (E.R.A.), is partly financed by the European Union, the Norwegian, German and British Governments and F.M.O., The development bank of the Netherlands.
         To provide you with another example of abundant clean energy that would suit Uganda. I am thinking especially of the tourist region of Kabale-Kigezi under the volcanoes.
Benin is building a 400-megawatt thermal power plant in Maria-Gléta, a suburb of Cotonou. The first phase of the 120-megawatt project costing US $ 172 million was inaugurated in December 2016. Why would Uganda not send engineers to Cotonou to learn the plant's installation technology In the Country?
         In the framework of renewable energies, I dreamed that Uganda participated in the degassing of Lake Kivu in the framework of the Democratic Republic of Congo-Rwanda-Uganda regional cooperation, that it carried its share of liquefied gas through a Pipeline to Kampala for use in the production of electric current. In return, Uganda would supply the same low-cost petrol and fuel oil pipeline to the provinces of Kivu and Ituri! Will my dream come true one day? Technology exists, only the political will is lacking. You may think of it in reading this letter. The regional integration of our countries is an imperative if we are to get out of underdevelopment.

Your Excellency,

         If you want the 37 million Ugandans to access electricity, it would be necessary to diversify the sources of energy without jeopardizing the future of our grandchildren and descendants.
         Above all, one should not rush, like this frog of Kampala who dreamed of his birth to cross at all costs the highway to reach the pond on the other side.While his cousin hesitated, the daredevil male caught his swing and made a jump in the middle of the highway. His less courageous cousin asked him in his slender voice:
"Uwange, Usuzu utsa
?" She said, seeing him motionless in the middle of the highway!
- "I mutuka elinyé mbale mbale, urubito lwa bika wansi wansi !!
".
In fact, the pretentious male frog never got up and was crushed by the next car.
Her cousin watched helplessly at the horrible spectacle and decided never to cross the highway.
         The lessons of Chernobyl in Ukraine and Fukushima in Japan are enough not to dare exploit the Pitchblende in Uganda and to use Uranium especially in our region of the African Graben, located on tectonic faults, subjected to frequent seismic shocks and To regular volcanic eruptions.
         As dean of the heads of state of the Great Lakes Region, it is up to you to use your wisdom to avoid mortgaging the future of our beautiful region, one of the most beautiful in the world.

Mheshimiwa Rais wa Jamuhuri, Ndugu Mkuu Mpenzi,

Nakutakia, wewe na familia yako, mwaka mupya 2017, wa afya njema na furaha.
Mungu akubariki, abariki Uganda na Afrika ya Mashariki!