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Karamoja youths asked to embrace government programs to get out of the poverty.

Some youth displaying their local crafts during the launch of the conference in Moroto

By Agustine Olule-Moroto

As poverty remains one of the major problems affecting Karamoja sub-region currently standing at 65%, with the most affected people being the youth, leaders across the region have called upon the youth to take the advantage of the available government programs like Emyooga, YLP and PDM to give startup capital to themselves.

Speaking at the Regional youth conference held at Community Development Center, Moroto district under the theme; accelerating recovery from COVID-19 and full implementation of the 2030 SDG, Mr. Kassim Kutosi, the deputy Chief Administrative Officer-CAO of Moroto district raised his desatisfaction following how youth in Karamoja always misuse the money when they receive it.

According to him, most of the youth after getting money from government programs misuse money by spending it on unproductive activities like drinking, buying expensive clothes, eat food and later fail to pay back the money.

Joseph Nagole Lobot the LC5 of Amudat district says most of the youth in Karamoja have buried themselves in alcoholism which he says has also led to the raising figures of HIV/AIDS in the region.

Michael Ayepa during a recent PDM disbursement activity in Nabilatuk district

He then challenged the youths to get out of alcoholism, conflicts and cattle raids if they want to prosper in life.

Meanwhile, John Paul Kodet the LC5 of Napak district called upon the youths in the region to take education as serious matter which will change them and the entire region. According to him, the illiteracy rate currently at the region stands at 70% which is the highest in the whole country.

He challenged the youths to utilize the available schools in the region to get knowledge in various fields which will help them earn a living.

According to statistics from Mr. John Paul Kodet the LC5 of Napak district, the alcohol consumption rate stands at 48%, poverty rate stands at 65%, cattle rustling standing at 95% something he said most youth are involved in. 

However, according to Michael Ayepa the PDM regional co-coordinator for Karamoja, the region has total number of 472 DPM Soccos with 51.3 billion expected to be dispatched to all the groups.

Recently, Local leaders in the Karamoja sub-region called for a change in the disbursement of the Parish Development Model (PDM) fund. They demanded that the funds be delivered in cash directly to the beneficiaries, rather than through electronic money transfers since the majority of the beneficiaries do not own phones and those that own, have poor network infrastructure or may not know how to operate mobile money transactions.

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