By JOHANNA Mpindi
In a bid to eliminate unemployment and poverty among the youth that is ranking very highly among the priority challenges that government has to address, government together with centenary bank have injected 32billion shillings in the youth Venture capital Fund(YVCF).
The youth Venture Capital Fund, is an avenue that was initiated to allow youth access to finance without necessarily being in groups, it also caters for youth who wish to access funds as individuals, as well as give a chance to those who wish to operate in smaller groups.
Addressing the media at Uganda Media Centre, Pius Bijirimana the permanent secretary for the ministry of gender, Labour and Social Development noted that, limited access to finance to support the establishment and expansion of youth economic enterprises is one critical
area that the youth have continued to express.
Even when government has put in place the legal and policy frame work, as well as youth-specific programmes geared towards providing the conducive space and creating opportunities for tackling the cause of unemployment among the youths which include, National Youth Policy, National Action Plan for Youth Employment, Youth livelihood Programme among others.
The responsibility of oversight on the Youth Venture Capital Fund was vested in the Ministry of Finance, Planning and Social Development (MFDEP) and was handed over to the Ministry of Gender,Labour and Social Development(MGLSD) in regard to the youth matters in the country and as part of this transition, the memorandum of understanding (MOU)with Centenary bank has been reviewed.
Mean while Fabian Kasi the managing director centenary bank has noted that, for one to access the loan, he or she has to be a Bona fide Ugandan citizen aged between 18-30years in possession of an authentic National Identity Card issued by National Identification Registration Authority (NIRA)must be individuals with valid trading licence’s or formally recognised legal business entities registered by the Uganda Registration Service Bureau and it is on this point that he has encouraged youths to register there business however small they are.
He also added that, the beneficiaries of the fund shall be required to contribute at least 10% of the loan amount in the business venture and also obtain letters of recommendation from LC1 and Sub County Chief where the business is located.
He has therefore called upon the youth to apply for youth loan from any Centenary Bank branch across the country as well as provide two reputable guarantors with no history of a criminal record.