By Raymond Baguma
The Minister of Education and Sports, Maj. Jessica Alupo, has inaugurated a 26-member taskforce to spearhead the implementation of Skilling Uganda programme.
The members were drawn from private companies and government departments.
They took oath of office during a ceremony at Statistics House in Kampala on Tuesday.
The Skilling Uganda programme, which was launched recently, aims at introducing short certified courses for school leavers, school dropouts and graduates.
Through the programme, the youth will undergo training parallel to the existing formal education system. Learners will be awarded certificates, diplomas and degrees.
This implies that one can become a mechanic, agriculturalist, florist, fashion designer, machinist, architect, chef, veterinarian, soil scientist or a technician without necessarily going through the formal education system.
The programme to cost about sh2 trillion in a period of 10 years, targets a total of 41,927 students by 2016/2017.
Dr. Charles Okou, the Skilling Uganda programmes executive secretary, said the taskforce was appointed to reflect a public-private partnership in the implementation of the programme.
Alupo said the taskforce will oversee the implementation of the programme for the next two years until the Skills Development Organisation is established.
Some of the members on the committee include Moses Ogwal (Private Sector Foundation), David Lukwago (Federation of Uganda Employers), Kevin Hughes (Uganda Chamber of Mines and Petroleum), Stuart Cook (Hotel Owners’ Association) and Harrison Kiggundu (Uganda Manufacturers Association).
Other members include representatives from informal sector organisations, trade unions, people with disabilities, small-scale industries, building contractors as well as privately-owned vocational institutions.
The team also has senior civil servants representing the ministries of tourism, environment, health, agriculture, finance, gender and education and sports. Also represented are the Government bodies such as National Planning Authority, and the National Youth Council.