The ministry of Gender Labour and Social Development has issued a rebuttal letter, refuted claims by Aidah Nantaba State for ICT and National Guidance which cast some of the former’s Programmes in false light.
In a story carried on Saturday, April 14, 2018, by the Red Pepper newspaper, the minister is said to have made patently false assertions informed by the unawareness of the modus operandi of specifically the Youth Venture Capital Fund and the labour export services.
According to a letter written by Pius Bigirimana, the Permanent secretary ministry of labor, minister Nantaba’s claim that money under the Youth Venture Capital Fund has been squandered is tenuous and utterly wrong as the fund is managed by and embedded at Centenary Bank, which is the exclusive point of access for all beneficiaries.
The PS further explains that since the inception of the Fund in 2012, the responsibility of overseeing the Fund has been in the hands of Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development, until 16th May, 2017 when this responsibility was transferred to the Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development, upon the decision of Cabinet.
“We wish to inform the public that selection of beneficiaries and appraisal of projects under this Fund is handled directly by Centenary Bank and there is no money under this Fund that is being ran by the Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development. Hence the claim that the Ministry is mismanaging the Fund is erroneous” the letter reads.
Mr. Bigirimana further revealed that to-date, 26,944 youth across the Country have benefited from UShs. 95.7 Billion under the Fund, and that the Youth Venture Capital Fund is not in any way linked to the Externalization of Labour Programme and therefore there is no single grain of truth in the statement that the Fund has been diverted to finance persons seeking employment abroad.
The PS also clarified on the issue of labour exportation, explaining that; labour is a mobile factor of production with a will, and that individuals will seek employment opportunities across borders with or without Government intervention.
He however notes that the Government of Uganda through the Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development has taken steps to regularize the export of labour for the obvious reason of ensuring safety of Ugandans, especially in the Middle East countries.
“So far, bilateral agreements have been signed with Jordan and Saudi Arabia and negotiations continue to bring onboard other countries. The key elements of these agreements are the traceability (monitoring) and safety of each worker. This is why it’s important to ensure that each Ugandan who wishes to get employment abroad, does so through the licensed companies” he writes.