Child labour will lead Bunyoro to Jamaica crime experience – Kikuube leader warns

The Kikuube District Town Clerk, Mr Hussein Bwami, closes an engagement meeting organised by Elimination of Child Labour in Agriculture (ECLA) in Hoima City in August 2023. (Image: Kazi-njema News)

The Kikuube District Town Clerk, Mr Hussein Bwami, has warned that Bunyoro might not escape sliding into the experience of Jamaica where drug abuse and consequent crime rise stands a huge challenge ahead of the government.

“This is how Jamaica found itself in a hard to reverse crime rate situation. We must fight to combat the vivid and reported increase in cases of child labour in our area,” says Mr Bwami.

Speaking on behalf of the Chief Administrative Officer at the closure of the meeting organised by Elimination of Child Labour in Agriculture (ECLA) in Hoima city, the town clerk noted the need to appreciate culture and the dynamic behaviours of the young people in efforts to eradicate child labour that kills children’s dreams when they miss education.

“Child labour not only destroys children but also the entire nation. If you happen to follow Ugandan drug addicts, they tend to behave like Jamaican dealers and criminals in the way they speak English and even their lifestyle. It is an indicator that if we do not take care, we are heading there,” he warned.

According to Mr Bwami, parents, caretakers and every member of society should get concerned when school going age children are seen engaged in child labour arguing that when they become criminals they turn into a societal problem for posterity.

Mr Eddie Wambewo, the ECLA Executive Director, said Bunyoro is among the regions most affected by child labour in communities growing sugarcane and tea on a large scale alongside owning tobacco and coffee plantations, according to the 2020 statistics.

“The Uganda Bureau of Statistics (UBOS) 2022 report indicates that more than six million children in Uganda are engaged in child labour. Bunyoro is among the leading areas due to expanding plantations,” he said.

The Hoima Grade One Magistrate, Mr George Nfitundinda, submits during an engagement in Hoima City. (Kazi-njema News)

The Hoima Grade One Magistrate, His Worship George Nfitundinda, expressed concern to see many children on the streets of Hoima city; proposing tough sanctions against companies involving them in child labour as a means of controlling the vice.

Mr Anthony Ayesiga, the Hoima District Senior Labour Officer, said some community members just have a negative attitude about education as they feel their children have to support them at work.

He, however, said they have heightened sensitisation in areas like Kyabigambire sub-county where child labour is very serious. 

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