Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Uganda’s Minister of Gender, Labour and Social Development Janat Mukwaya has called on the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) to visit Uganda and study youth and women programmes that can be adopted by member states.
Speaking at the 4th Session of the Islamic Conference of Labour Ministers held in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia on February 22, Mukwaya noted that “unemployment and underemployment and especially among the youth is a key development challenge and threat to peace, stability in the OIC States”.
However, she hastened to add that the “poor labour market outcomes in the OIC States should not be a cause for despair but a cause for action.” To this end she shared Uganda’s experience of addressing unemployment among youth and women through the Youth Livelihood Programme and the Uganda Women Entrepreneurship Programme.
Mukwaya further welcomed the OIC Secretariat to study these two programmes for purposes of adoption with necessary modification in other partners states.
The conference was held under the theme “Developing a Common Strategy for the Development of the Workforce” and was attended by 56 countries and several regional and international organizations.
The conference considered extensively the state of the labour market among the member states of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation and the strategies for employment creation.
Consequently, the conference adopted the OIC Labour Strategy; OIC Mutual Recognition Agreement of Qualifications for Skilled Labour Force; OIC Bilateral Agreement on the Exchange of Labour and the extension of the Islamic Development Bank funded Youth Employment Support Programme (YES) to all countries including Uganda.
Uganda’s delegation led by Mukwaya also held meetings with the delegations of Saudi Arabia, Oman, Qatar and Jordan on the sidelines of the conference. The meetings focused on strengthening cooperation in the promotion of safe and productive labour migration.