UGANDA: YOUTHS EXPLORE LIFE CHANGING EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITIES THROUGH SOCIALIZING AND SPORTS

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Uganda youths use social events like sports to get employment opportunities.

“I had to quit that job after only one and half months because of poor pay and yet I was supposed to work extra hours”

“When a pig is hungry, it will eat its own piglets. Our government has become greedy like a pig and so we are telling our brothers and sisters that our problem can only be solved by us”

“Sometimes I would spend the whole week without money. I am now trying to get exposure through attending social events like this football tournament, where corporate bodies also attend, with the sole aim of getting rewarding employment”

GULU-UGANDA: What if, after several years of studying in an intense degree program at the university, you graduate, only to find out that there are no jobs within your field? This is very frustrating. Most graduates end up doing odd jobs outside their qualifications for meager pay just to survive.

According to Mr. Wilber Watmon Jaramogi, his first job after graduating with a higher certificate in Software Engineering in December 2016, was that of a cashier and as an assistant manager at a pork roasting joint in Gulu city. He was being paid only shs.100, 000/= (less than $30 dollars) per month.

“I had to quit that job after only one and half months because of poor pay and yet I was supposed to work extra hours”, says Mr. Watmon.

Although Mr. Watmon applied for different job opportunities, or even starting his own business, he was lucky in getting his foot in the job market. He was being told to wait for jobs while his business venture had not picked up.

“Sometimes I would spend the whole week without money. I am now trying to get exposure through attending social events like this football tournament, where corporate bodies also attend, with the sole aim of getting rewarding employment”, says Mr. Watmon.

The football tournament was organized by the Operation Manager of Queen’s Apartment, 24-year old law graduate, Mr. Anderiya Ono Langoya, on Saturday, November 11, 2017 as part of the activities to unveil the new family business located in the heart of Gulu to corporate bodies; and also to bring youths together to network with such bodies.

“Many youths in Uganda who leave college find it difficult to get employment. As a business, we thought it prudent to bring together with corporate bodies so that they interact.  Who knows, some of the youths can get employment opportunities”, says Anderiya.

He says much as they would like to hold such tournament ever year; funding, getting the corporate bodies to sponsor and the political will to support the youths are lacking in our leaders.

23-year old Ms. Linda Alouise Mary, a graduate from Makerere University who specialized in Ethics and Human Rights, says getting a job in Uganda depends on the kind of connection you have in workplaces and money to facilitate your job hunt  ‘bribe’ employers.

“You have to know someone in the working environment in order to get employed and also to bribe them. You are not taken in if you don’t have money”, says Linda.

 According to statistics available in the public domain, unemployment rate in Uganda increased to 2.28% (percent) in 2016 from 2.15% (percent) in 2015.  The average unemployment rate per annum, from 1991 to 2016, stands at 2.41% (percent), yet universities and other institutions of higher learning send out not less than 700,000 every year up from 400,000 in 2012, according to the Daily Monitor of January 17, 2012.

A study conducted by the International Labor Organization (ILO) and Uganda Bureau of Statistics (UBS) indicates that between 5% (percent) to 13% (percent) of Uganda youths are unemployed more so, most of  the idle youths are also not actively seeking work.

On June 17, 2014, a group of unemployed youths in Uganda, calling themselves: ‘Jobless Brotherhood’, took three piglets that were painted with yellow color to Uganda parliamentary building in order to tell the world that the National Resistance Movement (NRM) government is composed of ‘greedy’ leaders. The color “yellow” is NRM party color.

“When a pig is hungry, it will eat its own piglets. Our government has become greedy like a pig and so we are telling our brothers and sisters that our problem can only be solved by us”, says Mr. Robert Mayanja, one of the leaders of Jobless Brotherhood.

In January 2005, another group of youths which calls itself “Unemployed Youths”, were arrested and detained when they tried to register unemployed youths in Uganda to present to parliament.

Corruption, nepotism, tribalism, bribery, low pay, delayed pay, lack of skilled personnel and limited experience are some of the factors affecting employment opportunities in Uganda. This has left an entire generation of youth beret of a right to live with dignity.

According to a survey conducted by the State-Owned New Vision newspaper in 2014, 73% (percent) out of the 771 youths surveyed were unemployed.

 

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