“This is revolving fund and once they don’t pay, other youth lose out,” says Bizimana.
Kisoro district LC5 chairman Abel Bizimana (pictured) has ordered for the arrest of the youth groups that failed to paid back Youth Livelihood Program money.
He said defaulting has hindered the project.
“There’s no politics in this. Whoever has not paid must be arrested and made to pay back the money.”
He made the remarks during an orientation workshop for local government leaders at the Kisoro district headquarters.
“This is revolving fund and once they don’t pay, other youth lose out,” said Bizimana.
He appealed to politicians in the district to desist from shielding the defaulters by convincing police to release them once they are arrested.
More government money will be lost that way, he warned.
On his part, Sam Niyonzima, the district Youth Livelihood Program focal person, said Kisoro received sh360m in the financial years 2014/2015 and 2015/2016 which was given out to different youth groups.
In the second phase, the district is understood to have received sh190m.
Niyonzima said Kisoro is at 40% repayment of funds by the youth and the major sub-counties that have not paid the funds include Muramba (sh14m), Nyundo (sh17m), Kirundo (over sh20m) and Busanza (sh17m).
“The arrests will soon start,” said Niyonzima.
“We shall start on youth groups that received the first batch of the funds in the financial year 2014/2015 because their one year grace period ended.”
Resident District Commissioner Shafiq Sekandi told New Vision that some youth groups diverted the funds into other projects whereas others got scattered after receiving funds, something that made them fail to pay back the money.
“Government will not let this money go, they must be arrested,” he said of those who had misused the money.
However Sekandi said that some youths had genuine excuses for failure to repay, like poor harvests due to unfavorable conditions, loss of animals by some strange diseases, among others.
Some sub-counties were singled out for doing well in terms of repayment, and among them: Nyakabande, Kisoro Municipality, Nyarusiza and Nyarubuye.
The National Youth Livelihood Program was launched on January 24, 2014 by President Yoweri Museveni and its core objective is to overcome the high unemployment rate and poverty among the youth in the country.
It covers all every district of Uganda (including Kampala Capital City Authority).
Cabinet and Parliament approved a budget of sh265 billion for the first five years of implementation (2013-2018).