Uganda, a vibrant and diverse country in East Africa, is home to a significant youth population. With their energy, aspirations, and desire for change, the youth play a crucial role in shaping the country’s future. However, there is a growing trend among the youth to favor the opposition over the current government. In this article, we will explore the reasons behind this shift, backed by statistics on youth population and unemployment, and shed light on the challenges they face under the current government. Additionally, we will offer recommendations to address these pressing issues.
According to the Uganda Bureau of Statistics (UBOS) census, the youth population in Uganda is estimated to be around 78% of the total population. This staggering number reflects the potential impact the youth can have on the political landscape of the country. However, many young Ugandans feel that their voices are not adequately represented or heard by the current government.
Youth Unemployment Statistics:
One of the major concerns faced by the youth in Uganda is unemployment. The UBOS census reveals that the youth unemployment rate stands at a staggering 64%. This high rate of unemployment has left many young people disillusioned and frustrated. They feel that the current government has not done enough to create job opportunities and address the pressing issue of youth unemployment.
Lack of Benefits for the Youth:
Another reason for the growing opposition among Ugandan youth is the perceived lack of benefits from the current government. While a select few individuals with connections or family ties to influential figures have been able to secure opportunities, the majority of the youth feel left behind. They believe that meritocracy is compromised, and opportunities for growth and development are limited to a privileged few.
Corruption and Lack of Trust:
Corruption remains a pervasive issue in Uganda, with many government departments plagued by this destructive practice. The youth, who are often the most affected by corruption, have lost trust in their leaders. The staggering corruption figures show that it undermines the potential for progress. The lack of transparency and accountability in the government has left the youth feeling betrayed and used for the selfish interests of political mafias.
Exploitation and Neglect:
Many young Ugandans feel exploited and neglected by the current government. They believe that political mafias use them as tools to achieve their own objectives, only to discard them once their purpose is served. This sense of betrayal has fueled the youth’s inclination towards the opposition, as they seek leaders who genuinely prioritize their welfare and empower them to create a better future.
Recommendations for Addressing Challenges:
To address the challenges faced by the youth in Uganda, the following recommendations are proposed:
1. Job Creation Initiatives: The government should prioritize job creation and implement policies that promote entrepreneurship and attract investment. This will provide young people with opportunities for economic empowerment and reduce unemployment.
2. Transparency and Accountability: There is an urgent need for the government to tackle corruption head-on. Strengthening institutions, enforcing anti-corruption measures, and promoting transparency and accountability will help restore trust in leadership.
3. Youth Empowerment Programs: The government should invest in programs that equip young Ugandans with the necessary skills and knowledge to thrive in the modern job market. By prioritizing education and vocational training, the youth will be better prepared to contribute meaningfully to the country’s development.
4. Enhanced Political Participation: The government should actively encourage and support the active participation of young people in politics. By involving the youth in decision-making processes and creating platforms for their voices to be heard, their concerns and aspirations can be effectively addressed.
Conclusively, the growing preference for opposition among the youth of Uganda is a reflection of their frustration and the challenges they face under the current government. The statistics on youth population and unemployment highlight the urgency of addressing these issues. By implementing the recommended measures, the government can regain the trust and support of the youth, ensuring their active participation in shaping a brighter future for Uganda. It is through inclusive and responsive governance that the aspirations and potential of the youth can be harnessed for the benefit of the entire nation.
By Cadre Akansasira Junior victor
Patriot, Pan Africanist
Vice Chairperson-Patriotic Volunteer Corps -Uganda