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First Lady Calls on Stakeholders to Support the Emerging Leaders Programme

The First Lady indicated that the Emerging Leaders Program is more than an initiative. She described it as a beacon of hope, a catalyst for change, and a demonstration of what we can achieve, when we unite around a common cause.

The First Lady and Minister of Education and Sports Mrs Janet Museveni has called on stakeholders from Government Agencies, the Private Sector and Civil Society to support the Emerging Leaders Programme that focuses on values, character development and life skills for young people.

The Emerging Leaders Programme is an initiative by the First Lady to address the moral and ethical decadence among the youth. It aims at nurturing and empowering the young people so as to raise a dignified generation of youth, strong in stature, character and wisdom. These will then become responsible and productive citizens for sustainable development.

The programme, which is being implemented in partnership with Makerere University, Life Ministry Uganda and the Global Leadership Summit, started with students in Tertiary institutions and was piloted in Makerere University. It is a capacity building and behavioural intervention coded “The Safe Campaign”.

On Wednesday, the First Lady chaired a stakeholders’ engagement to discuss how to hold hands with different institutions in implementing the Emerging Leaders Program. The meeting was hosted at State House Nakasero and was attended by over 70 stakeholders representing institutions that focus on HIV/Aids, substance abuse, anti- corruption and the financial sector.

It was graced by the Rt. Hon. Deputy Speaker of Parliament, Thomas Tayebwa, religious leaders, the Inspector General of Government, the Permanent Secretary Ministry of Education and Sports, the Makerere University Council Chairperson and Vice-Chancellor. Others were representatives from Makerere Students Guild and CEOs from leading Media organisations including Vision Group’s Don Wanyama.

“I invite you to join me, as we empower the next generation to realize their unique, God-given potential and to contribute positively to our nation’s future,” Mrs. Museveni said.

“Together, let us invest in our youth, instil in them the values of integrity, resilience, and purpose; empowering them to become the ethical and responsible professionals Uganda yearns for,” she added.

According to the First Lady, the collective efforts will not only transform individual lives, allowing them to reach their full potential, but also pave the way for a brighter and more prosperous future for our entire nation.

The First Lady indicated that the Emerging Leaders Program is more than an initiative. She described it as a beacon of hope, a catalyst for change, and a demonstration of what we can achieve, when we unite around a common cause.

Every day, she said, countless youngsters of this nation deviate from the path of greatness, in the face of real-life challenges that have robbed the destiny of many.

“Yet we all know that in the heart and mind of every young person, lies the potential for a bright future. Take a moment to imagine a generation that rises above these challenges with resilience, driven by a deep commitment to overcome every youthful lust, while embracing integrity and great stewardship of the resources entrusted to them,” she said.

Mrs. Museveni said, that today we stand at crossroads and we cannot stay silent any more. She noted that we cannot sit back and hope that all will be well.

“I know that all of us watch and listen to what is happening to our children and we shake our heads and we mourn inwardly and do nothing about it. What is fuelling this corruption is that Ugandans have taken off their hands on what they ought to do and they allow other people to do it for us everywhere. Instead of mourning individually and inwardly, lets hold hands”.

She said that while, she is mindful of the fact that each one of the stakeholders does great work to address these issues, she believes that together so much can be achieved to change this narrative and build a better Uganda.

The First Lady indicated that the Emerging Leaders Program is more than an initiative. She described it as a beacon of hope, a catalyst for change, and a demonstration of what we can achieve, when we unite around a common cause.

“Imagine a society where all our young people are committed to ascribe to this SAFE Campaign.”

Mrs Museveni said that by expanding the Emerging Leaders Program nationwide, the country will mould, impact, inspire and influence graduates, entering the workforce to espouse values-based leadership, as they serve the nation in their various work places and capacities.

She lauded Makerere University, LIFE Ministry Uganda and the Global Leadership Summit in Uganda, for their unwavering dedication and exceptional leadership, in executing the Emerging Leaders Program.

“Your commitment has been instrumental in the successful implementation of this initiative thus far. Thank you very much for rising to the occasion and graciously stewarding this work,” she said.

Deputy Speaker Thomas Tayebwa spoke about the dangers of technology advancement and emphasized the need for protection of children who have access to internet against pornography and other negative content on the internet. He also said there is need to define our ethos as Uganda.

Tayebwa also stressed the importance of mentorship for everyone including the old people for self evaluation.

The IGG, Betty Kamya advocated for the teaching and practicing of religious education in schools as a foundation of moulding good character of young people so that when they reach higher institutions of learning, they can withstand the vices

The Co-Chair Emerging Leaders Programme Mrs Barbara Kaija noted that our youth may have academic degrees, but they need the right set of values and character to succeed in life.

She observed that the challenges of drug and alcoholism abuse, HIV/AIDS and corruption are real and like cancer, they are eating away at our families and communities. If unattended to, they can decimate a nation, she added. 

She highlighted needs including investment in strong legislation to close some dangerous doors, counselling services, well-managed rehabilitation facilities and national and community campaigns. She called on each stakeholder to identify their niche in the programme and make a difference by offering leadership, influence, finances and expertise.

Makerere University Council Chairperson Mrs Lorna Magara said the older generation, leaders, fathers and mothers of the nation have a moral obligation to guide our young people, inspire them, and model the right values and choices.

She said that united, the stakeholders have the power to make a difference through the Emerging Leaders Programme which gives the opportunity and a platform to do just that. She invited the stakeholders to participate in various opportunities including leadership development, mentorship through shared experiences, work and community engagement and internship placements.

“Together we can build a brighter day. Your support, active participation and generous contributions will help us transform the mindsets for a prosperous future and nation. Let’s make today the turning point for countless young lives. Together, we can create a future filled with promise, possibility and purposeful living. Together, we can turn the tide against these destructive influences and set our emerging leaders on a path to success”.

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