Lwengo, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | There was controversy at the offices of the Lwengo Resident District Commissioner, as members of different enterprise groups converged to elect their leaders.
The Lwengo Resident District Commissioner Jjuuko Kasiita on Thursday called for a mobilization meeting for groups of people dealing in different income generating enterprises, to orient them on the modalities of benefiting from the recently launched Presidential Wealth and Job Creation Initiative; a new funding scheme targeting specialized groups.
The meeting which was attended by hundreds of people from various groups that included Bodaboda riders, salon operators, carpenters, welders, Motor garage operators, dealers in foodstuffs, markets and roadside vendors, traders among others, was however thrown into confusion after participants failed to harmonize positions on the selection their coordination committees.
The RDC had asked all people that identify with similar economic enterprise to elect, amongst themselves, a committee of five people that will be tasked to follow up on finances once they are released and report to the district technical teams.
According to Jjuuko, all similar enterprises throughout the district would be merged into one bigger Savings and Credit Cooperative Society-SACCO through which money will be channeled. But his suggestion attracted arguments from the audience that described the idea as illogical.
Joseph Baziwane, the Chairperson on Malongo Sub County Bodaboda Association, argued that the district has several registered Bodaboda groups which cannot be merged into one SACCO.
He insisted that the project disburses the funds directly to each of the existing enterprise associations from their respective areas of operation if they are to realize tangible results from the scheme.
Baziwane argues that many people have lost trust in government projects run at the district level saying that these do not effectively benefit people at the grassroots.
Moses Muwereza, a mechanic in Mbirizi town council blamed the RDC for causing public excitement before the funds are readily available. According to the project implementation framework, each of the approved SACCO’s will be given a financial pushup of 30 million Shillings to boast their production capacity.
But Muhereza argues that the financial allocation is itself too little compared to the preferred size of district SACCO’s, preferring that the money is given to smaller groups at village level where monitoring will also be simple.
Jjuuko Kasiita, the Lwengo RDC explained that President Museveni has learnt lessons from the earlier schemes that were abused at implementation stage, and this is the yardstick for ensuring success of the new wealth creation scheme.