By Vision Reporter
The Dutch ambassador Alphons Hennekens has called on Ugandan youth to put entrepreneurial skills acquired from the high institutions of learning into practice if they are to solve the unemployment problem.
“If you are to become your own business proprietors, then you have to be entrepreneurs,” he said.
Addressing youth at the 4th National youth festival held at National theatre, Hennekens , pointed out that despite the countries efforts to stabilize the economy, un employment still remains a challenge in Uganda with 83% of unemployed youth.
Hennekens predicted that by 2040 the figure may triple to 48 million people as a result of a throng of young people storming labor market contradicting the 2011 statistics which indicates 16 million people as the new entrants in labor market.
He emphasized that the youth expectations of getting absorbed in the public sectors will remain a mystery if no alternatives are devised.
“Job opportunities still remain scarce apart from self-employment. New jobs will come from private sectors, my advice to you is to work hard and become entrepreneurs,” he said.
Hennekens reflected on education aspect, recommending the government of Uganda to double its effort and venture into good quality education that would trim down flock of job seekers.
“Poor education hinders economic development. Focus on vocational, business studies. The government should motivate teachers with the pay rise,” he suggested.
Hennekens asked for good governance to create conducive atmosphere with the primary objective of enhancing the youth to benefit from its programs.
“Youth face major huddles in accessing funds. Government ought to establish transparent institutions free from corruption so that emerging young entrepreneurs can be catered,” he said.
Hennekens acknowledged high fertility rate as one of major hindrances to economic development stressing that, the present population leads to a double digit growth of the economy as a pre condition for an improvement of the living conditions of Ugandans.
He however pledged that European Union members will continue supporting youth in an effort to counteract unemployment tendencies.