President Yoweri Museveni has saluted the management of the Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Programme for supporting the youths in Africa in entrepreneurship empowerment skills in a bid to fight against household poverty.
The Tony Elumelu Foundation supports a total of 1000 African youths, over 300 of whom are in Uganda who after undergoing a 12-week training programme in entrepreneurship skills and mentored into networking opportunities, each youth receives US$5,000 dollars as seed capital.
In a meeting at State House, Entebbe with Mr. Tony Elumelu who is Chairman of Heirs Holdings, an African Investment Company in financial services, oil and gas, power and real estate development, President Museveni congratulated him for being among a few African business community executives to register success in the banking business and for having a heart to support poor people, the youth and women with financial empowerment.
“Giving a grant, none refundable loan to the young people means the affordability of capital. This reduces risks of acquiring loan money from banks at an alarming interest rate up to 24% in some banking institutions. These children are very brilliant, hard working and successful. Thank you for the financial support extended to the Ugandan youths,” he remarked.
He noted that Africa is a rich continent that is endowed with untapped potential of natural resources yet its people live in a lot of poverty adding that “It is a disaster in Africa that there are sleeping leaders that up to now cannot guide their people out of poverty.”
Mr. Tony Elumelu said the foundation was grateful for the support from the Government of Uganda. He said that his foundation is willing to fund more large-scale projects in Uganda.
During the meeting, there were some testimonies from the youths who have benefitted from such projects like agriculture, piggery, poultry and tree planting, among others. Finance and Economic Planning Minister, Hon. Matia Kasaija and other government officials attended the meeting.