Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | The Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development will this month inject 1.93 billion shillings in the Youth Livelihood Program- YLP.
According to the Minister for Gender, Labor and Social Development Frank Tumwebaze, 203 groups comprising of 2,236 youths from 26 districts will receive the funds.
They are Mbale city, Pallisa district, Kalungu, Kayunga, Mayuge, Nebbi, Dokolo, Ibanda, Amuria, Arua, Buhweju, Buyende, Rwampara, Rukungiri and Ngora among others.
Tumwebaze says that since the inception of the project, 37 billion Shillings has been paid back and Shillings 9.8 billion already re-ploughed back.
Tumwebaze says since its inception, 24,445 youths organized under 2,361 youth groups have benefited from the fund that targets poor youths across the country.
Last year, Paul Onapa, the national programme manager Youth Livelihood Programme in the Gender, Labour and Social Development Ministry said that funding for YLP will no longer go through the local government accounts to beneficiary groups.
The funds will now go directly from the Gender, Labour and Social Development Ministry to the accounts of the beneficiary groups to eliminate delays in disbursement of funds and implementation.
Previously, funds were channeled through the district accounts to the beneficiaries with the chairperson of the group, the district sub accountant and the sub-county chief as signatories.
In June, the government unveiled plans to write off loans to a tune of 108 billion Shillings that were given out under the program. This follows a failure by the recipients to reimburse the money especially during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The YLP has in the past faced several challenges which include interference of politicians, late disbursement of funds to beneficiaries, low recovery rate among others.
In the 2018 Auditor General’s report, it was noted that more than 28.4 billion shillings may never be recovered as almost 64% of the sampled YLP projects were non-existent. The report also indicates that a total of Shillings 38.8 billion that was disbursed to 5,505 groups in the financial years 2013/14 and 2014/15, only 26.7% was recovered from the youth countrywide.