Uganda’s Minister of Gender, Labour and Social Development, Hon. Janat B. Mukwaya is calling on International Labour Organization (ILO) member states to take “urgent action” against the effects of new global economic trends to avert negative social impacts.
The message was carried in Mukwaya’s communication as she addressed the 106th session of the International Labour Organisation Conference in Geneva, Switzerland on Tuesday.
Mukwaya noted that there is overwhelming evidence that the new development agenda is taking its toll on the global economy with Governments, employers and workers getting increasingly concerned about the effects of the economic trends on people, enterprises, employment, social cohesion and ultimately, stability.
“The World of work is faced by numerous problems of, inter-alia, poverty, income inequality, youth unemployment, gender inequity, and labour migration,” The Minister said, adding: “This calls for urgent action.”
Mukwaya emphasized the need for comprehensive and coordinated measures to cope with the new trends in the global economy as well as to combat possible negative social consequences.
She believes that if implemented profusely, the ILO’s range of critical initiatives such as the future of Work Centenary Initiative, Global Initiative on Decent Jobs for Youth, and the End to Poverty Centenary Initiative, which focuses on the 2030 Agenda for sustainable Development, would help bring fresh hope to tackling the emerging challenges.
“The entire world and Africa in particular is experiencing a fast growing young population. The challenge of youth unemployment is a serious concern felt globally; it is therefore, incumbent on us to focus our efforts towards a strong ILO that is able to effectively deal with the problem.” Mukwaya observed.
She hinted that promoting employment, social protection, and fundamental principles and rights at work and social dialogue through the ILO’s Decent Work Agenda constitutes an effective policy package to respond to the current economic trends.
Mukwaya, who led the Ugandan delegation comprising of among other officials the Permanent Secretary of the Gender Ministry, Pius Bigirimana, Director Labour, Martin Wandera and the Acting Commissioner Labour, Patrick Okello, said additional measures to safeguard a supportive environment forinvestment and growth is required, particularly for small enterprises and cooperativesemploying the largest number of working women and men in all economies.
She said the Uganda Government was reserving no energy in tackling the issue of unemployment especially among youth through the initiation of various initiatives including the new Green Jobs and Fair Market Programmes.