Government has threatened to arrest defaulters of the Presidential Initiative on Job and Wealth Creation program commonly known as Emyooga Fund.
This was revealed by the Microfinance Support Centre (MSC), Deputy Executive Director, Hellen Masika at a press conference held at the Uganda Media Center.
Masika noted that they are to arrest whoever defaulted the Emyooga funds, “the program has to be sustained and well run.”
“We are not going to sit for this program to die in our hands. We are going to first punish those people who want to kill it, before it is totally gone,” she said.
She revealed that many were misinformed that the Emyooga money, was money for elections and eating yet it’s a revolving fund.
Masika further noted that government has provided more funds, saying they are to do assessment of beneficiaries, and those found to have invested the money wisely, will be given an addition of 20 million shillings.
The Emyooga program was started by government In 2019, to further strengthen its mandate by absorbing more financially excluded Ugandans.
Masika noted that by 2020, 2361 local government officials had been trained and 6400 Emyooga SACCOs formed across the country. With the SACCOs in place, disbursement of seed capital to SACCOs that were fully registered began.
She revealed that 6,813 Emyooga SACCOs are fully registered, and 55,557 SACCO, Association and Local Government leaders have been trained
228 Billion has been disbursed and 54.3 Billion has been mobilized in savings.
MSC at 20
Masika said that MSC, has reached an exciting milestone of 20 years of financial inclusion, and contribution towards Uganda’s socio-economic transformation journey.
The organization, was established in August 2001 from the Rural Microfinance Support Project (RMSP), which was designed to provide micro-finance services to the rural poor, in line with the Uganda Poverty Eradication Action Plan (PEAP) 1996.
Upon establishment, MSC continued to implement the RMSP until its completion in 2008. Since then, MSC has carried on the objectives of the project, among which is to facilitate access to affordable financial services.
Cumulatively, Government, through The Microfinance Support Centre, has invested 600 Billion over the 20 years, creating employment opportunities and increasing household incomes for millions of Ugandans.
Masika noted that as part of the celebrations, MSC has lined up a series of activities, starting with a memorial lecture in honor of its former Chairperson of the Board, the Late Dr. Kisamba-Mugerwa
She revealed that Dr. Kisamba-Mugerwa was instrumental in influencing policy and championing reforms in the agriculture and finance sectors of the economy, and ably steered the Microfinance Support Centre from 2018 until his timely death in January 2021.
“From April to September, we shall conduct ‘anniversary barazas’ in every region, where we shall showcase our contribution to the region over the 20 years. We shall embark on a number of social responsibility activities, engage with key stakeholders and recognize clients who have been exemplary in the utilization of the funds extended to them,” Masika said.