Opposition Won't Disrupt Youth Livelihood Project

viagra order geneva; font-size: small; line-height: 200%;”>This is to respond to the false allegations and claims made by the Leaders of Opposition (Mr. Norbert Mao-President DP, more about Dr. Olara Otunu-President UPC, information pills Dr. Kiiza Besigye-Former President FDC, and Gen. Mugisha Muntu-President FDC, among others) that ran yesterday on “NTV at 9 pm” news telecast and other media houses, and today both the Red Pepper and the Daily Monitor newspapers:

The Leaders of Oppositions alleged among other things that UShs.40billion meant for youth projects under the Youth Livelihood Programme (YLP) had been diverted and used to bribe individuals to join NRM on the instructions of the Inspector General of Police (Gen. Kale Kaihura) to the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development (Mr. Pius Bigirimana).

More claims were made that the Programme is a political slush fund or “youthgate” that had not duly been approved by Parliament and that the set procedures of accessing funds under the Programme had been flawed.

The above allegations are not only misleading, inaccurate and unfortunate, but also tantamount to the Opposition Leaders’ abuse of their positions as national leaders who are expected power houses of knowledge and are supposed to epitomize judicious diligence in whatever they do or communicate.

We therefore wish to make the following Clarifications to put the records straight.

The Youth Livelihood Programme was approved by Cabinet on 4th September, 2013, passed by Parliament on 13th September, 2013 and officially launched by His Excellency the President on the 24th January, 2014.

The Programme is a product wide consultation among the youth of Uganda through their Leadership, Civil Society Organisations, Development Partners, Members of Parliament and Cabinet, among others.

The Programme Development Objective (PDO) of YLP is to empower the target youth in Uganda to harness their socio-economic potential and increase self-employment opportunities and income levels.

The Youth Livelihood Programme has an approved budget of Ushs 265 billion for the initial 5 years beginning FY 2013-14. For the current financial year 2013-14, the Programme was allocated Ushs.19.25 billion, of which only Ushs. 15.9 billion has so far been released by the Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development.

90 percent of the funds under this Programme are allocated to financing youth projects generated and approved by the district local governments. 10 percent is for operations costs at the sub-county, district and national level.

Owing to the inadequate funds released by the MFPED for FY 2013-14, MGLSD has adopted a phased approach of implementation beginning with 27 districts selected on the basis, youth unemployment rates, poverty count and land area.

The rest of the districts will be covered in the FY 2014-2015.

Implementation of the Programme has just begun with putting in place systems (establishment of the secretariat, development of simplified guidelines) and preparation of the districts to undertake their roles and responsibilities including mobilisation and sensitization, beneficiary selection, project proposal preparation, project appraisal and approval. This has already been done in the 27 districts under Phase I.

The funds so far spent under the Programme on the above activities are in accordance with the approved annual work-plan and budget for the operations funds for FY 2013-14.

No single youth project has been funded as yet, as the first submission of approved youth projects by the districts to the MGLSD is expected in the 4th week of April, 2014.

The youth shall receive support through youth groups of 10-15 members not individuals as alleged by the Leaders of Opposition. There is no way an individual can access the funds under YLP, except though duly selected groups. It is therefore, not true and factual for the Leaders of Opposition to allege that the MGLSD has used the YLP funds to finance individuals to the tune Ushs 40 billion through mere instructions from the IGP.

The selection of the beneficiaries, preparation, appraisal and approval of the youth projects is a responsibility of the Local Governments; not any individual person or the MGLSD.

The 27 district under Phase I have already begun the process of issuing interest forms and selection of beneficiaries and are expected to make the first submissions by the end April 2014. These submissions will constitute the first youth projects that will receive funding by the 2nd week of May 2014.

All the youth project funds under YLP have been allocated to the districts and the Indicative Planning Figures (IPFs) have been communicated to the districts. Each district will manage its Indicative Planning Figures.

The MGLSD does not have any funds set aside at the Headquarters to dish out to individuals or groups as the Opposition Leaders allege. The youth funds will be channeled directly to Youth Interest Groups (YIGs) accounts through their respective Special YLP District Youth Project Accounts.

The YLP has well laid out implementation guidelines and fund access criteria to which the MGLSD is committed to ensure that they are meticulously, religiously and judiciously adhered to by all implementers at all levels, without exception.

The implementation of the Programme has taken off and is on course.

We therefore call upon the public and more especially the youth to be part of this process and avoid any diversionary propaganda intended to disrupt smooth implementation and realization of the Programme Development Objective.

K.F Mondo

Assistant Commissioner Youth Affairs/Spokesperson


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