By Alex Byakatonda
Government has commissioned the Presidential Initiative for Zonal Industrial Hub in Kigezi region, that is intended for skills development for the youth and value addition to agricultural produce.
The industrial hub was yesterday commissioned by the Statehouse comptroller, Jane Barekye, during a meeting that was held at the hub site in Kamuganguzi Sub-county Kabale District, along the Kabale-Katuna road.
The meeting was attended by Resident district commissioners, LCV chairpersons, District Internal security officers, District commercial officers and District National Resistance Movement-NRM chairpersons for the six districts of Kigezi Region. Others attendees included the Municipal mayors and Town clerks from the three municipalities of Kabale, Rukungiri and Kisoro.
Barekye, who said that 20 industrial hubs have been built in different regions of the country, added that the hubs are, an initiative of President Yoweri Museveni, which he pledged during the past election
campaigns, as one of the ways of fighting Youths unemployment and also improve on house incomes among Ugandans.
According to Barekye the hubs, are intended at equipping disadvantaged Youth aged between 18-35years, with skills like carpentry, welding, shoemaking, welding, confectionery, tailoring and knitting, stone making, and hairdressing among others.
She adds that the industrial hub, will be operating on semester modules, two semesters every year, after which each learner will be equipped with a certificate.
Barekye also says that the skills training hub, which is entirely free of charge will also offer ideological training and mindset change.
She, however warned the district leaders not to politicize the hub,since they are the ones, who will be in charge of selection beneficiaries from their respective administrative entities.
The Director Industrial Hubs and Presidential Projects in the State House, Engineer Raymond Akankwasa Kamugisha, said that the Presidential pledge is intended at skilling the unprivileged members
of the society, who have not had an opportunity to attain former education, so that they can be useful and join a money economy.
Eng Akankwasa, says that the hub is expected to take in the first batch of students in June this year.
The Kabale District Chief Administrative officer, Edmond Ntimba, said that when they received the idea of the Industrial Hub, he did not hesitate to conceive the relevant district stakeholders, who also
immediately agreed to giving out land, where the hub was constructed, after learning that the hub was meant to equip the youths with skills, the women and the disadvantaged group.
He expressed optimism that the problem of unemployment resulting from lack of skills, adding that industrialization of Uganda’s economy, which has been one of the manifestos of President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni and the NRM government.
The Kabale District LC5 Chairperson, Nelson Nshangabasheija, also said that commissioning the industrial hub has been long overdue. He, implored all the leaders in the region to embrace it, saying that it is intentioned at equipping all the people in the districts with skills that will transform them from being job seeker to job creators.
The Kabale Resident District commissioner, Godfrey Nyakahuma, expressed joy at the Industrial hub, which he said that on top of offering employment to the unemployed youths, the same will project
will support production by creating value addition facilities, which will contribute a lot to the household incomes of Ugandans.
He also said that once the youths are skilled under the project, they will contribute a lot to the country’s economy and her tax base.