Government is exempting youth groups that received money under the Youth Livelihood Program and invested it in agriculture productivity but lost their projects to prolonged drought and diseases. Pius Bigirimana, the Permanent Secretary in the Gender, Labor and Social Development Ministry disclosed this in an interview with local news agency, URN.
According to Bigirimana, government has decided to exempt the groups from paying back the money since they lost their projects under circumstances that are beyond their control. He explains that some of the groups that opted for animal husbandry lost more than half of the livestock under their care.
“We need to help these people because it was not of their own doing that their projects failed. If we make them pay, it is as if we shall be telling them that they caused the drought or swine fever or Newcastle disease,” he said.
In addition to being exempted from paying back the money, government will disburse more funds to these groups to enable to make their enterprises profitable, according to Bigirimana.
The Youth Livelihood Programme (YLP) is a Rolling Government of Uganda Programme, targeting the poor and unemployed youth in all the districts in the country. The Programme is implemented under the Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development (MGLSD). It is financed initially from Government own resources (with a possibility of development partners’ support in the future). The initial budget estimate for the Rolling Programme is Uganda Shillings 265 billion in the next 5 years. YLP is a community demand-driven Programme that is implemented with guidance from the Central Government and the Local Governments. The funds are advanced to the Youth Interest Groups (YIG) in form of a Revolving Fund in order to increase outreach and enhance sustainability of the Programme.