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Is the Parish Development Model panacea to Uganda’s poverty fight?

President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni meeting the National Resistance Movement (NRM) Caucus on the Parish Development Model (PDM) last week at Kololo Independence grounds. (Source NRMParty)

Last week on Friday at Kololo Independence grounds, while meeting the National Resistance Movement (NRM) Caucus on the Parish Development Model (PDM), President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni appealed to the NRM Caucus to support his proposal for government to inject UGX 100 million ($ 28,298) per Parish per year in the Parish Development Model fund. The PDM is among the many programmes that Government has designed to achieve the 3rd National Development Plan (2020/21 to 2024 / 25) whose goal is to increase household incomes and improve the quality of life of Ugandans.

The Parish Development Model (PDM) is a new strategy government plans to use for organizing and delivering public and private sector interventions for wealth creation and employment generation at the parish level as the lowest economic planning unit. Its objective is to take government to the people in a more effective way through data gathering, community mobilization and mindset change, area-based enterprise selection and development, provision of financial services, coordination of government programmes, and feedback by the people on government services and wealth programmes.

The model is part of government of Uganda’s plan to shift from deciding for the people to the people deciding for themselves. If the 11th parliament approves government’s proposal of allotting UGX 100 million ($ 28,298) per parish per year, then every year government of Uganda would be spending UGX 1,059.5 billion ($ 2,998,818,051) on the 10,595 parishes in the country. This would be a very good intervention if properly implemented and can survive the thirsty corruption vampires that have failed all good initiatives.

It’s important to note that PDM is not government of Uganda’s first intervention on poverty eradication, other programmes which include; Entandikwa scheme, Bona Bagagawale (prosperity for all), Operation Wealth Creation, Youth Livelihood Programme, Uganda Women Empowerment Programme, and Emyooga were once designed, adopted and implemented by government before. 

Some of the programmes implemented by government did not successfully achieve their intended goals due to corruption and politicization of the programmes as politicians decided to sideline the technocrats in the implementation process so as to gain political expediency. The unsatisfactory performance of the previous poverty eradication initiatives forced the government of Uganda to rethink and some old poverty eradication initiatives were terminated and succeeded with new ones of which the PDM is among.

Many Ugandans are still skeptical whether the PDM will succeed due to the fact that previous initiatives have not done much in reducing the number of Ugandans living below the national poverty line of UGX 3500 ($ 1) per day. 

ACFIM will monitor the PDM fund and will let the public know the secret on how the money will have been utilized. Wait for the expose!

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