The Presidential Initiative on Skilling the Girl-child is reaping fruits after a successful third graduation ceremony that saw a total of 8,480 youths inclusive of the 528 SFC spouses get certified in technical skill sets.
Sunday 8th, September was the long-awaited day for the parents, graduands, well-wishers, continuing students and the NRM diehards who made long queues at the Kololo ceremonial grounds early morning despite the heavy downpour to catch a moment with the fountain of honour, his excellency the President of Uganda, Y.K Museveni who was the guest of honour.
The initiative that was launched by the president in 2017 has noted an increment in the number of girl-child scholars every year, 566 students graduated in the first year of its inception, 7607 in the 2nd year and 8480 this year including 2500 women.
Graduands got skilled for 6 months between 2018 and 2019 through courses like bakery (836, 884), knitting (173, 195), hairdressing (1,184, 1,414), weaving (40, 46), tailoring (1,264, 1,404) and shoemaking (232, 280), spouses trainees (528) in nine different centres including Mutundwe, Luzira, Kigoowa, Wandegeya, Subway, Katanga and Nakulabye.
The student leader Madina Mutesi, thanked the president for also thinking about the people with disabilities (PWD’s), she noted that people like her have always been left out at certain occasions but the efforts of the president have managed to bring them to light and that now they can also contend for top jobs or start up their own and employ others with these skills.
President Museveni in his speech expressed his gratitude to the graduands and urged them to stop sleeping but rather use the skills they’ve attained to make long-lasting businesses that will bring development not only to them but to the country at large.
“We have for over the years had a weakness of getting rid of products mostly textile that is made from outside countries, now that we have empowered you with skills, your role now is to finish away from the demand that we have in our country.”
He added that” Youths should engage themselves in making cement blocks which are currently on high demand, unique music instruments with built-in microphones, household materials like doormats, carpets and leather products made in our country are now yearned for globally.
“The task of skilling our healthy and literate youth is, therefore, much easier now than before and I encourage our youth to participate in all government poverty alleviation initiatives, We are now going to expand this program to all districts countrywide. we will divide it into 21 zones each with a district leader,” he noted.
The statehouse comptroller, Mrs Lucy Nakyobe urged the students to put their skills to good use and not to put the president’s resources to waste. ” As we plan on extending this programme to the other districts in the country, I urge those who have attained skills so far to put them to good use and not waste the president’s resources, we have done our best and so you have to use your hands to make a living out of the skills you’ve earned.”