Ugandans view social-services provision as top problem government should address, but are unwilling to pay more taxes for better services

Public services

Social services – including health care, education, and water supply – top the list of the most important problems that Ugandans want their government to address, recent Afrobarometer surveys show.

Many citizens who sought key public services during the previous year said it was difficult to obtain the services they needed, and substantial proportions say they had to pay a bribe, give a gift, or do a favour to obtain them.

But a majority of citizens would prefer to pay lower taxes, even if it means fewer government services, rather than pay higher taxes in exchange for better services. And many doubt that the government uses tax revenues for the well-being of citizens.

While the country is grappling with how to raise more domestic revenues to support its development, these findings suggest that citizen participation in the allocation of state resources and a more transparent utilization of public monies might improve public perceptions of the government’s resource management.