By Christopher Nyeko

GULU:  Grandaunts from Gulu University have been asked to strategically position themselves to embrace the implementation of Parish Development Model {PDM} programs as they leave campus life.

The imploration was made on Friday during the 17th graduation ceremony held at Gulu University Playground presided over by the University chancellor Prof. Fredrick Kayanja.

1245 students graduated in different areas of field.  Three students graduated with doctorates of philosophy PhD, 454 students graduated in sciences, 104 grandaunts were female students and 305 were male students from both government and private sponsorship representing 36.5 percent. Meanwhile 791 students graduated in humanities of which 325 were female and 466 were male students on both government and private sponsorship representing 63.5 percent.
The Parish development model is a government milestone strategy for service delivery aiming at improving incomes and welfare of all Ugandans at the household level and promoting much agro production, processing, marketing and value addition of the agro products.

According to a recent report from the ministry of local government every parish in Uganda will receive a total of 117 Million shilling for the implementation of parish development modules.

Kayanja implored the grandaunts that, “As you are graduating and leaving the university, be the ambassadors of parish development model and other government programs in the communities, use the knowledge you have attained from school to transform the lives of the community.’’

‘’As motto of the Gulu University dictates “for community transformation you then be the agent of change” he added

Minister for education and sport first lady Janet Kataaha Museveni who was represented  by Denis Hamson Obua the state minister for education and sports in her read message said that the government is impressed with various research that are being done by Gulu University are impactful.

Gulu University came up with Covilyce-1 herbal remedy for covid-19 triggering his Excellency the president Yoweri Museveni pledged support 3.7 shilling in clinical trials and as government we are increasing funding on research activities at Gulu University.

Professor George Ladaah Openjuru the Gulu University vice chancellor urged the grandaunts to use innovation in order to address poverty and many problems in Acholi sub region

According to a 2021 Uganda bureau of statistics report published, Acholi sub region is rated the poorest in Uganda with a poverty index standing at 67 percent. Recently the government of Uganda has recruited the parish chief in all the parishes

However, Paul Okello, a statistician at Uganda bureau of statistics in the recent interview with our reporter said that they (UBOS) is conducting another survey countrywide to gather the information on household leaving standards in preparation for the implementation of PMD. This survey commenced on the 10th June to the 26th June 2022.Geoffry Ochieng Osborn the Lamwo resident district commission welcomed the imploration citing that people are not guided because the educated and the specialist preferred to live in town to rural areas where primary production is taking place.
Ociheng advised that, “Let the community also benefit from you, be with them and advise them on what you learnt from the university”.
He however promised to ascertain the names of the Guardians from who hailed from Lamwo district to enable him form what he described as formidable task force to implement parish development modules as he termed newly graduan as very influential, informed and eloquent brains in decision making.

Meanwhile Francis Okello Rwotlonyo the Amolatar resident district commission revealed that Amolatar is in the preparation stage for the implementation of the parish development program.

“We always welcome anybody who intends to give their assistance in the community. Incase If sons and daughters of Amolatar who graduated today decide to help locals in Amolatar with their innovative idea as government we will look for the best ways of supporting them”.

The RDC revealed that Pertaining PMD, Amolatar have trained the leaders on the concept of the parish development modules.
He suggested that, “now that the university has released the graduates who he believed are well train and creative, in wherever part of the country you are heading to, work to ensure that the life and the mindset of the uneducated are change through peer education and sensitization”Miriam Nakirywa, graduate of agriculture and environment pledged that she will not be a job seeker but pledged to intensify and provide agricultural extension services to the locals in her area.

“we have not been trained for job seeking but to be creative and to come up with innovative ideas.  I will be focusing on sensitizing my people on post-harvest handling and environmental conservation so the issues of climate and poor agro produce which are reportedly containing aflatoxin are addressed”.

Michael Opiyo, a person with physical disability who graduated with a bachelor degree in business administration and accounting said parish development modules focus on monetizing the economy so there is need to introduce locals to embrace financial literature and banking.

Opiyo said inadequate numbers of agricultural extension and Para social workers are hindering the development of the people because the direction and which steps they should follow are not issued hence people are left to struggle on their own.

“Now that I have graduated from the university, I will help locals in my area on enterprise selection and business management skill” he pledged.

Gulu University is among nine government public universities and was fourth established in 2002 after Makerere, Mbarara and Kyambogo University.

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