President Museveni embarks on monitoring PDM funds

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President Museveni embarks on monitoring PDM funds
Senior Presidential Advisor Moses Byaruhanga addressing some of the PDM beneficiaries in Luwero district during a meeting in Luwero town on Monday

President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni has embarked on the monitoring process of the Parish Development Model (PDM) funds to eliminate irregularities in the system.

The revelation was made yesterday, 29th April 2024 by the Senior Presidential Advisor on Political Mobilisation, Mr. Moses Byaruhanga while launching the monitoring process at Bunnya Foundation Primary School, P.W.D village, Luwero Town Council in Luwero District.

While addressing the congregation, Mr Byaruhanga said the National Resistance Movement (NRM) government has initiated several programs to benefit Ugandans, however, some have faced certain hindrances which the government has managed to solve or is looking forward to working on.

“In January 1997, the Universal Primary Education (UPE) was initiated and in February 2007, the Universal Secondary Education (USE) was introduced. Here the beneficiaries began to complain about the fees charged by the school heads. When we interrogated the school heads, they replied that they didn’t have enough teachers, so they outsourced some teachers who are paid using the money which is received from parents.  However, the government is still investigating the matter,” the Senior Presidential Advisor stressed.

“The National Agricultural Advisory Services (NAADS) was created in 2001 to address constraints of lack of access to agricultural information, knowledge and improved technology among rural poor farmers in the country. However, the program reached a few people. And on the 26th of February 2022, PDM was initiated by the President as a strategy to improve service delivery and alleviate poverty at the grassroots level. However, there are some challenges which need to be ironed out,” said Mr. Byaruhanga.

He further revealed that the President had appointed Hajjat Mariam Namayanja Kiwanuka as a Special Presidential Assistant to monitor PDM funds.

Mr Byaruhanga also clarified that the maximum amount of PDM money to a beneficiary is Shs1 million which is payable within two years. He added that the money doesn’t go back to the government, it remains in the Parish SACCO.

On people who squander government resources, Mr. Byaruhanga assured that the culprits will be arrested and dealt with according to the laws that govern the country.

The warning came after the Luwero Resident District Commissioner (RDC), Mr. Richard Bwabye’s concerned about the misconduct of some government officials involved in soliciting PDM money from beneficiaries. Mr Bwabye also revealed that he had recovered a total of Shs61 million and was still hunting for more culprits to be arrested and charged accordingly.

On the issue of money lenders collecting National Identity Cards from borrowers as collateral, Mr Byaruhanga instructed the RDC to ensure that the money lenders return the IDs to the owners because that is a government property.

He added that the President instructed the Attorney General, Hon. Kiryowa Kiwanuka to institute a law deterring money lenders from using National IDs as collateral security.

On the other hand, Mr Byaruhanga urged Luwero politicians to cooperate with the residents to deal with the rampant land wrangles in the area.

During the event Mr Walulya Josephus Mukasa, the PDM coordinator in the Luwero sub-county revealed that they have a total of 1,156 beneficiaries; 551 males and 605 females.

He said that the beneficiaries have prioritised the agricultural sector such as growing maize, beans, vegetables, coffee, and Matooke and rearing cattle, chicken, pigs, and goats.

Walubya also noted that 70% of PDM money has been well utilised in the sub-county whereas the remaining 30% of the money has issues where the beneficiaries directed it to other things like paying school fees for their children.

Hajjat Mariam Namayanja Kiwanuka, the Special Assistant to the President explained to the congregation her role as the officer responsible for monitoring PDM funds across the country.

She explained that her role is to register the names of all PDM beneficiaries, the amount of money they received, how they are using the money, and the challenges they face, and thereafter, the President will intervene accordingly.

Hajjat Namayanja also said the monitoring process has begun from the Luwero district and will be extended to the other parts of the country.

Mr. Richard Ssimbwa, the LCIII Chairperson for Luwero sub-county complained about the parish chiefs who extort money from the beneficiaries. He narrated that the parish chiefs removed the names of the right beneficiaries from the system and replaced them with the names of those who bribed them which hindered the success of the PDM program.

He concluded by commending the President for initiating the program and also appointing Hajjat Namayanja to monitor the program.

The NRM Chairperson for Luwero district, Mr. Ronald Ndawula appreciated the government for introducing the PDM, a project aimed at alleviating poverty among Ugandans.

He also told the residents that now that they stay in a peaceful country, they should vote well next time.

 

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