Finance, Planning and Economic Development Minister, Matia Kasaija, has encouraged people to develop a saving culture if they are to jump out of poverty and bolster their financial statuses.
Speaking at the launch of Emyooga programme for districts in Greater Kibaale including, Kibaale, Kakumiro and Kagadi, the minister who is also the Member of Parliament for Buyanja County in Kibaale District discouraged people from a hand-to-mouth practice that he said keeps them in abject poverty.
He asked stakeholders to educate people how they can eradicate poverty from their homes.
“Anybody can reach anywhere they wish as long as they are committed. Therefore, I urge the RDC to change people’s mindsets that everybody can become rich if they follow what they have been taught. I urge you to save money and I assure you that you will be rich since you will be having an income fallback position. Anytime you face a problem, you can run to the Sacco and borrow instead of spending any money you get. That is not very good” Mr Kasaija said.
Speaking at the same ceremony, Microfinance State Minister, Hajj Haruna Kasolo, has tasked District Commercial Officers and Community Development Officers to mobilise people so they can benefit from the Presidential Initiative on Wealth and Job Creation (Emyooga) programme.
the minister said that commercial officers are by their responsibility obliged to ensure that people develop a saving culture and also encourage them to form Saccos for increased household income.
Mr Kasolo also said that community development officers have a duty to mobilise people so that they can participate in any activity that can improve their since they know the financial statuses of every individual from village to district levels.
“How can people be poor when commercial officers who are responsible for heaving their livelihoods are in offices; who are supposed to upgrade savings and non-associations? Isn’t that their work? They are community development workers who are supposed to ensure that every person is in a group at village and parish levels. They are supposed to cause development in homes and these have data about everybody’s level of income. They know the rich and the budding rich. Let’s go back to leadership so that everyone should know their roles. We have to sort ourselves out,” he said.
However, the minister said that for one to benefit from Emyooga funds, they should be in a group registered by the community development office, verified by the Resident District Commissioner; have a bank account number reflecting its usual savings with six signatories.
Mr Kasolo added that though government improves social infrastructure, it is incumbent upon people to prepare themselves so that they can spur economic development in the country.
“We are going to give these funds to only those who are ready with bank accounts and organised in groups. Who among you can’t open a bank account? Even if we construct roads and airports, extend electricity everywhere and do everything possible, these people will remain poor until we pave a way for them how to save their money. Now roads are being constructed, but what do you use them for? asked Mr Kasolo.