KUMI DISTRICT: President Museveni, who is also the NRM Presidential flag-bearer, has revealed what he described as government‘s masterplan to turn Uganda’s fishing Industry into the biggest revenue earner in the world and also employ over 12 million Ugandans.
“We have a masterplan to make the fishing Industry in Uganda the biggest in the world. It will earn us more money than some oil producing countries,” he said.
Candidate Museveni who is on his third day of his campaign trail in Teso, was this Monday meeting NRM leaders, flag bearers and delegates who will form the mobilizing team in the scientific canvassing of votes.
The NRM leaders meeting was for the districts of Teso South at Boma grounds in Kumi Municipality.
The fisheries and aquaculture sub-sectors contribute significantly to Uganda’s national economic growth, development as well as food and nutrition.
Uganda has one of the largest fresh water resources in the world and almost 20 percent of its surface area is water.
This expansive water resource has supported fisheries sector, enabling both capture and farmed fisheries since 1920s.
While fisheries contributes 12 percent of agricultural GDP of Uganda and supplies 50 percent of animal proteins consumed in the country, a number of challenges, which seriously affect the economic and social contribution of fisheries and aquaculture, cripple the vibrancy of the sub-sector.
Some of the challenges include over fishing caused by increasing demand due to population growth, use of illegal fishing gear, poor quality of fish seeds, limited access to fish seeds and feeds, as well as continued trade in illegal and unrecorded immature fish hence costing the country about USD 429million in income lost.
According to the Minister of State for Fisheries who is also Woman MP Serere district, Hon. Hellen Adoa, the bladder of the Nile Perch is medicinal and used in hospitals.
She added that cooking oil can also be extracted from the Nile perch.
Hon. Adoa further told the gathering that some errant soldiers who were supposed to enforce proper fishing guidelines on the water bodies in the country but turned into rouges were being arrested.
President Museveni thanked the people of Teso for supporting NRM.
He asked the leaders to sensitise the public on the aims of ‘Emyooga’ funds for organized groups.
The President assured the youth that more funds will be injected into their groups to realize some impact.
“In the last 4 years, only 13,000 youth have benefited. That does not have an impact. I am going to put my foot down again and demand more allocation by parliament to the youth fund so the over 500,000 youth can at a given period benefit and get out of poverty,” he said.
On compensation of the cattle President Museveni told the meeting that shillings 50 billion has been allocated to each of the regions of Lango, Acholi and Teso for the exercise.
On the issue of the veterans, Museveni assured the nation that the 25,000 veterans that have not been paid will with time receive their emoluments.
The President, however, reiterated his call for the electorate to demand from the aspiring MPs proper allocation of funds during the budgeting process starting with priority areas instead of only looking at their salaries and allowances.
He also asked the delegates to explain to the people the wisdom NRM adopted of getting Uganda back to its feet by emphasizing on political unity, building a strong army and establishing peace that has attracted many investors.
He said the investors are paying taxes that have enabled the government to work on the infrastructure and improve on other social services.