New Vision (Kampala)

Uganda: Labour Ministry Faulted On Youth Entrepreneurship Training

The ministry of Gender and Labour has not adequately executed its mandate of offering youth entrepreneurship training, despite the budgetary support it gets from the Government, a senior official has said.

The state minister for microfinance Aston Kajara said the biggest support the ministry got was the sh3b in the 2010-2011 national budget. The money was partly meant for training the youth in business management as a way of combating unemployment.

"We expected the money to bring about a significant impact in the lives of the youth, but to our dismay, the ministry never carried out any training," he said.

Kajara was closing a five day youth entrepreneurship course at Luzira, a Kampala suburb, during which 600 youth were trained in business and enterprise start-up techniques, a programme jointly supported by the Warid Entrepreneurship Fund and Enterprise Uganda.

The minister also blamed members of Parliament for frustrating the original plan of channelling the said funds through Enterprise Uganda, an agency equipped with expertise in business training.

The Enterprise Uganda executive director, Charles Ocici, said the Government must consider entrepreneurship development among the youth as one of the avenues of fighting the current souring unemployment numbers in the country. On average 500,000 youth graduate from universities in Uganda every year, yet only about 20% get absorbed into formal employment.

According to Shailendra Naidu, Warid Telcom's chief commercial officer, the Warid Fund, will train 2,000 youth a year. Successful participants will be trained, mentored and given start-up capital.

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