President Museveni has said that Uganda’s youthful population is an asset to the country in a number of ways.
“This youthful population is our greatest asset. These young people are not a problem at all. They are a big advantage,”Museveni said on Saturday as the country marked World Population Day.
Citing the current Coronavirus pandemic that the world is facing, Museveni said that Uganda’s youthful population has worked in favour of the country in regards to fighting the pandemic.
He said whereas people with advanced age are easily attacked and killed by the virus, because Uganda’s population is mostly youthful, the effects of the pandemic have not been so adverse.
“Uganda has a predominantly young population with those aged 0 – 14 years being 47.9% and those below 30 years being 78%. As Ugandans are aware, young people tend to withstand Covid-19 better than the more elderly population. In this regard, Uganda’s population age structure being predominantly young is working in our favor in the fight against Covid-19 pandemic,”Museveni noted.
Museveni said that since the youthful population of much benefit to the country, government will continue to provide them with education, skills, jobs and health care so that they can be gainfully employed, save and invest so they can become the engine of the country’s growth.
“This is the demographic dividend of the economic benefits we can have out of our growing youthful population.”
The president however said he was worried at the rate the country’s youthful population is affected by what he termed as lifestyle diseases including diabetes, high blood pressure, obesity and cancers.
“We have noticed that in spite of epidemic; we continue to witness an increase in life style diseases. This means that in Uganda, 891,000 people have high blood pressure, 534,000 people have heart disease and 229,000 people have diabetes,” he said.
Museveni however noted that the lifestyle diseases can easily be prevented if leaders give people the right information and knowledge including proper nutrition, physical exercise and avoiding stress.
“I urge all leaders to strengthen community mobilization using local radio stations to educate the masses about these preventable conditions.”
Ugandans will recall that when NRM came to power, we had many unfavorable indicators within the