Infrastructure Dev’t Can Address Youth Unemployment – Experts

Former Defence Minister Amama Mbabazi has rubbished whispers in the public domain that he was responsible for the death of the powerful Brigadier Noble Mayombo, order Chimp Corps report.

“It’s very unfortunate. How could anyone suggest that I am connected, malady even remotely, to Mayombo’s death?” wondered Mbabazi in an interview with NTV on Tuesday night.

On Tuesday May 1, 2007 at 3.00PM local time, Mayombo died at Agha Khan Hospital in Nairobi.

It was said then that Mayombo, then a Permanent Secretary in the Defence Ministry, had succumbed to complications of acute pancreatitis.

The cause of his sudden death remained a mystery, with rumours of foul play gaining momentum shortly after.

It was alleged that Mbabazi had clashed with the inquisitive Mayombo on questionable procurement of military hardware.

But Mbabazi, who was yesterday campaigning in Mayombo’s birthplace of Kabarole, said he was always on good terms with the deceased.

“We never crossed each other’s pass,” said Mbabazi, confidently.


In a separate interview, Mbabazi challenged government to release the report into Mayombo’s demise.

He said the rumours are baseless and that their purveyors “satanic.”

It remains to be seen if Mayombo’s death will turn out to be a key issue in the ongoing presidential campaigns.

Born in 1965, Mayombo was a Ugandan soldier and Member of Parliament (MP).

He belonged to the Babiito Royal Clan in the Kingdom of Toro, one of the four constitutional monarchies in modern-day Uganda.

Mayombo was the 7th out of 12 children. Their mother, the late Beatrice Rwaboni Abwooli, died in 1997.


He attended Nyakasura School in Fort Portal and Ntare School in Mbarara. He was admitted to Makerere University to study Law.

However, in 1985, at the age of 20, he left Makerere to join the National Resistance Army (NRA), in their guerrilla war against the Obote II regime (1980–1985) and the military junta (1985–1986) that ousted him.

After the NRA captured power in 1986, Mayombo returned to the university and finished his law degree, graduating with a Bachelor of Law (LLB). He then obtained the Diploma in Legal Practice (Dip Legal Practice) that is required to practice law in Uganda, from the Law Development Center in Kampala.

He also held a Masters degree in law, Master of Laws, (LLM), specializing in Human Rights law, from Makerere University.

Work experience

In 1994, he was appointed by the Ugandan military to be one of the delegates to the Constituent Assembly that drafted the 1995 Ugandan Constitution.

At age 29 years, Lieutenant Nobel Mayombo was the youngest member of the Constituent Assembly. He distinguished himself as an avid debater with a solid knowledge of the law and with a sense of humour.

Following the ratification of the new constitution, Mayombo was appointed to represent the Ugandan military in the Ugandan Parliament.

He resigned that position on 30 January 2006, to take up an appointment as Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Defence.

He was appointed President Museveni’s ADC where he displayed an insatiable sense of dedication and loyalty to the Movement system of government.

One of the most enduring images was the ADC squatting after noticing that the shoelaces of the president were untied and promptly tying them.

He received rapid promotion through the military ranks, quickly rising through Lieutenant, Captain, Major, and Lieutenant Colonel to full Colonel by 2004.

By that time he was the Director of Military Intelligence

During the same period, the Ugandan security organs were accused of the creation and maintenance of “safe houses”, where arrested suspects were detained incommunicado beyond the 48 hour limit prescribed by law, without any charges being brought in court.

It was under Brig. Noble Mayombo’s reign as CMI chief that the People’s Redemption Army (PRA) under Rtd Col. Dr Kizza Besigye was first brought to the light of Ugandans.

Besigye was later to deny this and other accusations linking him to Joseph Kony’s Lord’s Resistance Army in Northern Uganda. It was Brig. Mayombo himself who confronted Besigye over a radio talk show on KFM’s Hot Seat programme one evening. This was to increase Besigye’s popularity and maybe even affected or energized his performance in the next presidential elections.

In October 2005, Colonel Nobel Mayombo was promoted to Brigadier and appointed Permanent Secretary to the Ministry of Defense.

In November 2005, he was appointed Chairman of the Board of Directors at the New Vision, the Uganda government-owned newspaper whose shares also trade on the Uganda Securities Exchange.

The last days

On Thursday 27 April 2007, Brigadier Noble Mayombo felt unwell and was admitted to Kololo Hospital, a small private hospital on Kololo Hill.

He was diagnosed with acute pancreatitis, a sudden inflammation of the pancreas, which causes the organ to leak its enzymes into the surrounding tissues and organs, leading the pancreas and surrounding organs to start digesting themselves (auto digestion).

The next day, his condition having worsened, he was transferred to the Intensive Care Unit at International Hospital Kampala. His condition deteriorated further and on Sunday 29 April 2007, comatose, on life-support systems, he was flown to Agha Khan Hospital in Nairobi, Kenya.

On Tuesday 1 May 2007 at 3.00PM local time, Noble Mayombo died at Agha Khan Hospital in Nairobi, due to complications of acute pancreatitis. At the time of his death, he was aged only 42 years.

After his Death

The sudden illness and death of Brigadier Mayombo shocked most who learned of the news.

Speculation that there might have been foul play involved in his death caused the Ugandan Government to launch an investigation into his sudden death.

The three-person team that carried out the investigation included: (a) Dr. Peter Mugenyi, Director of the Joint Clinical Research Center, as the Chairman (b) Colonel James Mugira, Commander, UPDF Tank Unit and (c) Lieutenant Tagaswire Rusoke, a biochemist in the UPDF.

The team concluded their investigation and handed their report to President Museveni in November 2007.

The detailed findings of that probe have never been publicized.

Following a period of public viewing at the Parliament Building in Uganda’s capital, Kampala, the body of Brigadier Nobel Mayombo was taken to Kololo Airstrip for a state funeral attended by Ugandan Cabinet members, senior members of the Ugandan military, Diplomats accredited to Uganda and delegations from several countries including: Rwanda, Kenya, Southern Sudan, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the East African Community and South Africa.

He was buried at his ancestral home in Kijura, Kabarole District, on Saturday 5 May 2007.
Failure to effectively deal with deepening unemployment among Africa’s growing youth population could seriously erode the economic gains achieved across the continent in recent years, drug experts at the Program for infrastructure Development summit said.

The Summit brought together government representatives, ampoule senior policy makers and business leaders to discuss the nexus between infrastructure development and youth employment.

The meeting that was held in Abidjan was part of a week-long discussion on the challenges and opportunities facing Africa as it attempts to accelerate continent-wide infrastructure projects.

Ibrahim Mayaki, the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD) Agency’s Chief Executive Office, warned that Africa faces a large and growing unemployment challenge, with 300 million youth entering the labor market in 2030.

According to him, half of the continent’s population of 1.1 billion people is currently under the age of 25 years, with this population expected to double to 2.4 billion people by 2050. Moreover, the rate of entrants into Africa’s labour market is expected to increase by three per cent every year until 2020.

Dr Mayaki emphasized that inclusive policies are a pre-requisite for political stability.

“A population that has an average age of 49 years cannot be governed in the same way as a population where the average age is 19 years old,” he said.

“If we do not succeed in the next 10 years in changing the way we govern and conduct business, we might face huge stability issues on the continent,” he added.

According to him, accelerating the development of Africa’s regional infrastructure could be the game changer that will trigger industrialization and create jobs.

It is for this reason that African leaders developed the Program for Infrastructure Development in Africa (PIDA) in 2012, as the means for socio-economic growth and intra-African trade, he explained.

“Structural transformation will happen through industrialization and this will be the main factor for creating jobs,” he said.

African Development Bank (AfDB) Director for Human Development, Sunita Pitamber, said that the infrastructure sector boasts massive job opportunities.

She highlighted that the Bank created 8 million jobs through infrastructure development and trained 5.5 million youth in the area of infrastructure.


Header advertisement
To Top