The Black Monday Campaign
In a bid to fight the maleficent theft of public resources, civic and anti-corruption activists in Uganda launched a campaign in November 2012 dubbed the Black Monday Campaign. This launch followed ineffective efforts by Government to kick corruption out of Uganda.
The Black Monday Campaign like other strong social movements evolved as an organic process. It was not informed by a formal systematic strategic planning process but it was informed by a felt citizen need and spontaneous actions.
The Black Monday Campaign seeks to mobilize citizens to mount a sustained assault against the injustice of theft of public funds. The ultimate result is to see that integrity in public life is restored through a citizen-led process that rejects theft of public money.
Black Monday therefore does not focus on all theft in every part of society but focuses on theft of public funds. This is because theft of public funds is theft of resources that citizens contribute to a government to function. Indeed, when citizens do not pay tax they are criminals – who are labelled tax-evaders. It is therefore imperative that when public officials steal taxes and other public money with impunity they should be seen as criminals that should be rejected and brought to book.
At HURINET on November 12th 2012, several CSOs decided to ‘close shop’ for a day. It was unprecedented by NGOs in Uganda and at the end of that week; the Black Monday Movement was born.
- Uganda National NGO Forum
- Action Aid International Uganda
- HURINET – U
- Anti-Corruption Coalition Uganda
- Uganda Youth Network
- Forum for Women in Democracy
- Wear black clothes every Monday as a sign of your resolve against theft of public funds and shun corruption at a personal level
- Isolate all public money thieves and denounce them wherever you encounter them
- Boycott all businesses and enterprises of the corrupt and supporting Ugandans working honestly
- Demand political action from the State against public money thieves
- Speak to at least 5 Ugandans about dangers of theft of public funds and actions needed
Black Monday is a campaign that focuses on protesting theft of public funds with impunity and promoting integrity.
Black Monday and Integrity
While the campaign started off with protesting against the theft of public funds with impunity and demanding for the return of these funds, there arose a growing need to shine a light onto those who were serving the country with integrity especially in the civil and political service.
The campaign promoters realized that it was also important for citizens to understand that Black Monday does not fight theft of public funds for the sake of fighting theft. The fight against theft of public funds is a fight to restore integrity in the management and stewardship of public funds.
Citizens also have to appreciate that the solutions to fighting theft of public funds will not come from outside but they reside in our society. The promotion of integrity as part of the process of fighting theft of public funds recognizes that even in the current government there are people who espouse the ideals that we fight for and there is a need to recognize and celebrate more of those kinds of individuals in every sector of government. In this way ‘the good’ will crowd out ‘the bad’.
At the level of implementation, it is important to note that citizens stand to gain from a fully functioning state that treats them with dignity and provides quality services.
Therefore, all activities of Black Monday focus on working with citizens to liberate themselves from a system that cordons corruption and pursue civic and non-violent means to deal with the corrupt.
In that regard, the Black Monday Campaign will focus on mobilizing citizen’s action through;
- Voter power: Use votes to choose the right leaders
- Tax power: Demand full transparency and accountability of all taxes and other public money
- Participation power: Be informed, take action, challenge the corrupt and do not rest until you see decisive action
Work through these three ‘power-centers’ is anchored in a process that builds on a sustained and country-wide consciousness-raising campaign to reach millions of citizens, recruiting citizens from all walks of like to join the anti-theft campaign.
- It is a political party and interested in capturing power
- Started by Bishop Zac because he has presidential ambitions
- It is a donor-driven agenda and thus a conduit for foreign interests in Uganda
- Black is evil, it is bad and satanic…
On the Contrary…
- Inclusive citizen movement
- Non-partisan but certainly political
- Inclusive citizen movement ALL are invited – religious, political, non-aligned
False and diversionary…
- There is no known proposal funded by donors on Black Monday although we have benefited from overall donor programming against corruption
- The colour black is about reclaiming the dignity of black but also a sign of mourning losses to corruption!
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