NMG Journalists Shine At Population Awards

Three Nation Media journalists have won awards from the United Nations (UN) for their outstanding coverage of population and development issues.

Daily Monitor’s Correspondent in Hoima district Francis Mugerwa won the online category while KFM’s reporter Benjamin Jumbe won the radio category while Irene Namyalo, a Reporter with NTV Uganda, won under the TV category.

The journalists received the awards during the launch of the state of Uganda and the state of world population reports, 2015.

The 2015 State of Uganda Population Report underscores the importance of quality education, as a pathway to achieving Uganda’s demographic dividend and realize Vision 2040.The report outlines a number of strategic recommendations and some of the policy frameworks that Uganda needs to put in place to improve the quality of education and skill of the future workforce.

The ceremony was held under the theme “Quality Education, a foundation for achieving Uganda’s middle income status”

They each received plaque and a tablet at a function that was held at Imperial Royale Hotel in Kampala on Thursday.

The function was witnessed by UN officials, Government ministers, academicians, civil society activists, students and population experts and Government technocrats.

The awards were organized by the Ministry of Finance’s Population secretariat with support from the United Nations Population Fund(UNFPA) and.

Prof Augustus Nuwagaba,A Poverty Eradication Expert and Managing Consultant of Reev Consult International who delivered a key note address, acknowledged that Government has invested heavily in the education sector but the country still has limited skilled manpower.

Prof Nuwagaba advised parents to identify, nurture and support talents of their children since they are lucrative ventures that have transformed various countries.

The planning state Minister Mr David Bahati who was the chief guest at the awards appreciated the role of the media in covering population and development issues.

He challenged academicians to come up with practical models that can transform the country’s education system and present them to relevant Government authorities instead of looking for solutions from politicians who may not have the requisite skills to initiate such technical proposals.

According to Mr Bahati, the new wave of optimism has taken shape and Uganda is more secure and safe to initiate and implement various projects that improve the quality of life and transform the country.

Government has increased salaries of teachers as evidenced from the increase from Shs 200,000 to 465,000 of the lowest paid teacher, he said.

“Next year, the salaries will be increased by 15% and we are building more teachers houses to improve their welfare, Bahati said.

He said Uganda Bureau of statistics is conducting a manpower survey to establish the skills Ugandans have and the skills required in the market so that Government devises ways of closing the identified gaps.

Story By Francis Mugerwa