Lands Minister, Judith Nabakooba has cautioned graduates against indulging in activities such as gambling and womanizing that will drain their incomes and make them poor.
The minister made the call during the 9th graduation ceremony of Royal Institute of Business and Technical Education, Bwaise where she graced the occasion as the guest of honour.
In her address, Hon Nabakooba noted that such vices among youth derail their efforts of poverty alleviation and end up being a danger to society.
“Protect yourselves from HIV/AIDS and learn how to appreciate and be contented with the little you have. It is better to earn less faithfully with integrity than becoming rich, with ill-gotten wealth,” she urged.
To elevate their living standards, the minister advised the youths to form groups and embrace government programmes and get money to start their own businesses.
“Form groups, work together, develop projects because when you are in a group, you can move faster and you have very many ideas that can work out than working as an individual. Together you can shield yourselves from the storm but also from the shocks of starting a business alone,” she advised.
266 students from different disciplines were conferred with National Certificates and Diplomas in catering, cosmetology, mechanical engineering, and Journalism and media studies among others.
The minister lauded the institute’s management for supporting the government in training youths for a better sustainable future.
“I am happy that you have largely sent out a group that has more job creators than job seekers. At such a critical time when the cost of living is a bit high, and you have done it at an affordable cost with the relevant quality vocational education, you have supported the government’s strategy of supporting the youths irrespective of their religions, gender, tribes or race.”
She added: “You are among a few people who will enable the government to realize its target by 2040, we hope to celebrate with you then,” Nabakooba added.
She pledged government support towards the institute.
“I wish to commit on behalf of the government to lobby for government support plus supporting competence based learning. And providing machinery.”
Government has greatly played a big role in establishing business technical, vocational education and training with the fact that more than 20 government training centres, schools, institutes and Polytechnics have been established to meet the demands of education in our country.
“We therefore thank the Royal Institute that has supported the government to train youths in all these lifelong skills. Thank you for being a key partner of the government’s agenda. Uganda has always looked and learned from countries such as Japan and China where skills have made their nationals to be self-sustaining and reliant,” she explained.
Mr John Lubega, the Royal Institute director asked the graduates to put the knowledge they have acquired into practice.
“You are now ready for the world. I want you to surface all the challenges and innovate new ideas that will benefit our country using the knowledge you have acquired,” he said.
According to Mr Geoffrey Kawanguzi, an official from UBTEB, many schools engage in malpractice and in the recently released exams in May, exams for 58 students were canceled but thanked the Institute management for training their students discipline.
“When we get you in any activities of malpractice, we cancel all your exams for that semester,” he noted.