Government to inject Shs70b in women

Kumi- Government is planning to inject Shs70b in women savings groups as a means of improving household incomes and lifting Ugandans out of poverty.

Speaking in Kampala on Wednesday, Ms Mary Karooro Okurut, the Minister of Gender, said government had drafted a white paper and would soon table it before Parliament for scrutiny.

“Like the youth fund, we want women to be helped financially to lift themselves out of poverty. I hope the white-paper will be approved by Cabinet and Parliament before [end of the year],” she said while launching a photo exhibition at the Uganda Museum.

“The fund is expected to start in the next financial year and in the next five years, about Shs70b will be given to women groups,” she added.
Government has been involved in a number of initiatives, especially for youth and women as a means of creating jobs, improving household incomes and lifting Ugandans out of poverty.

The challenge
Uganda is grappling with unemployment, which according to the World Bank is estimated at more than 60 per cent.

However, government is putting emphasis on mainly youth whose unemployment rate is estimated at more than 80 per cent.

Recently, a report authored by Action Aid warned that unemployment was a major challenge that has the potential to cause insecurity.
The exhibition, themed ‘Women in resistance’ and supported by the French government, seeks to build capacity among vulnerable women groups, especially war victims.
Ms Karooro thanked the French government for the continuous support to women that has helped to empower many of them.

The event that runs up to the end of September is jointly organised by Alliance Franaise de Kampala, French Embassy and UN Women.

Dr Ahuna Ezaikonwa-Onochie, the United Nations resident coordinator, urged women to rise up and get involved in the demand for their rights.
“Like in Nigeria, women in markets are the most feared. There was one time when a tax was imposed on them and they rejected it as unfair. Today when they talk, government listens. Likewise here [Uganda] you should not just sit back, aocate for your rights,” she said.

wouma@ug.nationmedia.com

SOURCE: Daily Monitor

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