Bamasaba Cultural Leader Hails President Museveni for Skilling the Youths as 482 Graduate at Bugisu Presidential Industrial Hub

His Highness Jude Mike Mudoma, the Umukuka III of Bamasaba Cultural Institution, has hailed President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni for the timely intervention of equipping the youths in the country with vocational and practical skills which are essential for thriving. 

The cultural leader noted that for a country like Uganda which has the second youngest population in the world with more than three quarters (78 per cent) of its citizens below the age of 35, skilling is the way to go.

“This means without projects like the Presidential skilling hubs where uneducated youths are skilled for free, there could be a problem as far as unemployment is concerned,” the Umukuka said.

His Highness Mudoma made the remarks on Friday May 3rd, 2024 as he graced the graduation ceremony of 482 youths between 18-35 years of age, who graduated in diverse vocational skills at the Bugisu Zonal Presidential Industrial Hub, situated in Lukhoge, Bungokho South, Mbale district. 

The successful candidates received certificates in courses such as leather processing (shoe making), tailoring and design, bakery & confectionery, welding and metal fabrications, hairdressing & makeup, carpentry & joinery and building & construction practice.

His Highness the Umukuka congratulated the graduates upon persevering to complete the 6 months training and the State House Comptroller, Ms. Jane Barekye for providing logistics to ensure smooth operations of the skilling hub.

He emphasised the need for diversification in courses to offer more opportunities.

“I call upon the government and State House to include courses like computer science, motor vehicle mechanics, electrical engineering, plumbing and driving because they also have the potential to further alleviate poverty and empower the youth,” His Highness Mudoma stressed.

He further implored graduates to look at their newly acquired skills as instruments of change, not only to sustain their families but also to uplift their communities. He also called upon district leaders to prioritise the skilled youths while extending government programs.

“Government has put up funds like the Youth Livelihood Program, Emyooga and the Parish Development Model. I urge district leaders to ensure these skilled youths are given first priority because they need to acquire the necessary machines for them to start their own employment,” the Umukuka emphasised.

He further called upon the government to consider establishing another skilling centre in North Bugisu and also increase the enrolment numbers to enable more youths to benefit.

The state House Comptroller, Ms. Jane Barekye congratulated the youths upon completing the training and urged them to promote the name of the President by exhibiting good character in their communities.

She informed the guest of honour and the graduates that fighting unemployment, increasing household incomes and reducing criminality within local communities were among the targets of the President in setting up the skilling hubs across the country and this has been achieved.

“And now H.E the President has a visionary plan to establish common user facilities in every district that will provide access to specialised machinery corresponding to each skill in the hub. They will enable individuals to work in phases and gradually accumulate capital for their own investments,” Ms. Barekye said.

She further issued a call to district leaders to prioritise the employment of skilled graduates as part of local content as this will offer working experience to the youths and also act as a source of employment.

The Member of Parliament for Bungokho South, Hon. Wandwasi Robert, appreciated President Yoweri Museveni for the well thought idea of establishing a skilling hub in their region.

“Madam Comptroller, send our regards to our dear President for what he has done for Bugisu sub region. We are really very sure that our future is being secured because a future without prioritising the youths is nothing,” Hon. Wandwasi said, adding that the skilling hubs are part of the NRM Manifesto which the government has implemented so well.

Hon. Wandwasi who also sits on the committee of government assurances in parliament which is mandated to track whatever the government promised to do for the people of Uganda called upon the government to fast track the rural electrification program because most of the skills need power which is rare in most of the villages.

“Many of them are now graduating but the communities they are coming from have no electricity,” he said.

The Director of Industrial Hubs and Presidential Projects at State House, Eng. Raymond Kamugisha appreciated partners; the Ministry of Local Government, the Directorate of Industrial Training and the Uganda People’s Defense Forces with whom they work to ensure the success of the program.

Students drawn from the administrative units of; Mbale, Bududa, Bulambuli, Manafwa, Sironko, and Namisindwa were awarded with a Uganda Vocational Qualifications Level One Certificate by the Directorate of Industrial Training (DIT) which is equivalent to the Uganda Certificate of Education (UCE). 

The ceremony attracted attendance of Members of Parliament, RDCs, LC5 Chairpersons, CAOs, religious and local leaders.