Don’t burn your fingers with PDM funds, Alupo warns thieves in govt

Vice President Jessica Alupo launched PDM information system (PHOTO/Courtesy).

KAMPALA — The Vice President Jessica Alupo has warned parish chiefs against handpicking of people to benefit from Parish Development Model.

While launching the disbursement of the first monies of the Parish Revolving Fund under the PDM to the beneficiary households, Alupo stated that the PDM resources are for all Ugandans in the target groups.

“So long as the beneficiary qualifies, please do not discriminate on the account of age, religion, or even party affiliation and tribe, these monies are for all the people of Uganda to come out from poverty and join money economy, specifically, the targeted groups, those households which are completely outside the money economy,” the Vice President said.

Alupo also warned sacco leaders against tempering with PDM funds —warning that there will be gross consequences.

“Please do not burn your fingers by tampering with resources for the Parish Development Model,” she said, adding that those that have tried to “short circuit PDM resources will tell you it’s not palatable”.

The Vice President urged that proper implementation of PDM would ensure shared prosperity.

The Vice President also launched the Parish Development Model Information System (PDMIS), a system used to profile and analyze the economic status of the beneficiaries, follow the approval of the loans through the different levels and transfer funds from the saccos to the account of the individual beneficiaries.

The PDMIS system will ensure a smooth and secure way of transferring PDM funds from the saccos that bank with PostBank and Housing Finance Bank to the accounts of the individual beneficiaries.

Mr. Dennis Galabuzi Ssozi, the National Coordinator of the PDM said the programme has come with hindsight to tackle all the bottlenecks.

“One of the requirements needed during the loan application process is a business plan detailing how a beneficiary plans to use the funds to grow their business and make loan repayments,” Mr Galabuzi said, also telling the Vice President that Al beneficiaries have been trained.

Galabuzi said all beneficiaries were vetted to determine their income statues among other perquisites.

Galabuzi noted that this is done to remove bureaucracy where money can get lost as has been the case before.

Derived from one of NRM’s core ideological principles of socio-economic transformation, PDM, Galabuzi says, is a question every leader must be interested in.

“This programme deals with solving problems faced within our societies. As a leader, your legacy is built on changing the lives of your people.”

On the issue of youth inclusion in the money economy to eliminate high levels of unemployment, the former Busiro North legislator says that there’s a quota of 30% for the youth on PDM funds that is sent at the parish.

Andrew Kabeera, the executive director at PostBank Uganda promised the bank would provide each sacco with a smartphone to ensure smooth loan applications through the PDMIS. This would help in fund transfer to the individual accounts of the beneficiaries.

“We are going to have over 10,000 PDM agents in different parishes across the country to enable individuals without phones to use their national IDs to receive the PDM funds,” Kabeera said.

We are the ones who have moved the money to the first beneficiary in this country as per the PDM system. I would like to thank the government for this initiative, at least money is going to get into the pockets of people for financial growth and inclusion, by also getting them into what you call the money economy,” he noted.

Kabeera said PostBank has around 2500 Socco accounts. “We intend to come up with a solution to bring all the financially excluded Ugandans and give them services that they can easily access from wherever they are. So, we are making sure that the final beneficiary receives that money compared to all the other programs that we’ve had where the processes are way along”.

This website interacted with some of the beneficiaries who received the funds during the launch.

Dorothy Nabawanuka said the money would help to boost her livestock business.

“I carry out livestock farming and I’m buying another bull with the funds (UGX1000,000) I have received from PDM today. When the bulls mature, I will sell them at a profit and also sell the dung as manure to raise the money to pay back the loan. Each car of cow dung costs UGX. 700,000,” she said.

Nabawanuka says, that, she could be able to return the money in the agreed period.

PDM was launched on 26th, Feb 2022, in Kibuku district, Bukedi sub-region, by its chief proponent, President Yoweri Museveni as a government flagship programme geared to wealth creation and poverty eradication among Ugandans as promised by NRM to “Secure the future” of Ugandans in the 2021 general elections.

It is structured to boost wealth creation opportunities and to turn every parish in the country into a model development unit. PDM, unlike other government poverty eradication programmes, places the economic power in the hands of communities in real terms. It also offers decision-making in the hands of beneficiaries who will decide what suits them best in their locality.

Financial inclusion (pillar number three) will promote savings and investment by households in the most viable activities with a potential for generating a production surplus for home and local consumption, and the market.

The Model positions the “Parish” as the epicentre and reference unit for planning, implementation, supervision and accountability to drive socio-economic transformation.

At the launch in Kibuku, 10,594 parish SACCOs were launched. These SACCOS are avenues through which people will be able to obtain financing. For starters, each parish will get a revolving fund of Shs17m. Residents will constitute themselves in a format that best fits their development and economic needs based on their unique circumstances.

The Model is designed under seven pillars which include Production, Storage, Processing and Marketing; Infrastructure and Economic Services; Financial Inclusion; Social Services; Mindset change; Parish Based Management Information System; Governance and Administration.

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