You must be an extreme believer in the current management institutions of Uganda to think the Parish Development Model will be a success. And this is not to say it won’t. But for a mother who has one by one lost six of her seven children to drowning in a lake, it would not be exercise of reasoning by her to let the surviving one swim even in a basin. Much as on the face of it, it would be near madness to think a grown child can drown in a basin of water.
The parish development model is on paper designed to perfection. With intent to support over 3.5 million households that are currently surviving on the subsistence economy, this coupled with special packages for women and persons with disabilities. An addition to its pillars of production, storage, processing and marketing, infrastructural and economic services, mindset change and community mobilization, Paris Management information system then governance and administration. All this with a general objective of poverty alleviation. There seems nothing is to impede the success of this new project.
What would! The funds were approved and are available, the districts, parishes and villages have leadership which is recognized and can be of tremendous help, consultations were made, and top economists participated in the design of this so much praised project who’s ideal seems just a question of time.
But then, why no excitement from the prospect beneficiaries, this despite the high media coverage of the launch and pre-launch discussions of the Parish Development Model, despite praises of the same by politicians not to mention that it was launched by the president of the country.
Whereas there maybe speculation over the cause of the non-excitement or expectance from the prospect beneficiaries, one thing that is undoubtable, is the loss of faith and hope in such government projects aimed at poverty alleviation.
Many have been launched before, injected with extreme amounts of money, sensitization, media coverage and all that appeases just what meets the eyes. Despite all this, backstage was corruption and embezzlement where hardly any convictions are seen, ghost beneficiaries all over the country, ill planning, and some allegations of need to bribe for one to benefit. This no wonder the intended beneficiaries of the past poverty alleviation projects are still the same ‘in person’ even for the Parish Development Model, the only justification can be, the previous ones were a failure.
And what can be said of this, yet another project worth hundreds of billion shillings, maybe to be positive for the sake, otherwise it’s the same cycle, same old wine in brand new bottles.
Writer: BARYAMUJURA MAHAD, a passionate about social justice.