In an effort to combat the soaring rates of HIV infection among youth, the Ugandan Ministry of Education has launched a program that recruits 140 Makerere University students to support the fight against HIV/AIDS. The Uganda Aids Commission (UAC) released worrisome statistics showing that over 50,000 new HIV infections occurred in the last two years, largely affecting people between the ages of 15 and 24. This prompted the decision.
Selected as the trailblazing university for this endeavor, Makerere University witnessed the commissioning of these students under the Emerging Leaders Programme (ELP) by First Lady and Minister of Education and Sports, Ms. Janet Museveni. The ELP seeks to raise the caliber of leaders that come out of the nation.
Minister Janet Museveni revealed that the graduates completed a thorough week-long training program through the representation of Agriculture Minister Mr. Frank Tumwebaze. In light of the rising incidence of HIV/AIDS, she underlined the significance of high-skill training, especially for young people. This would help to establish a culture of values-based leadership.
The First Lady confirmed that additional universities and higher education establishments would receive a similar instruction. She emphasized the graduates’ responsibility in lowering the dangers of HIV/AIDS transmission and urged them to share the knowledge they had gained.
Mr. Peter Muhereza, the dean of students at Makerere University, expressed his delight in his institution’s selection as the trailblazing establishment for this important initiative. Among the 140 students who finished the course, Ms. Mariat Namyalo emphasized the program’s applicability since the majority of students are sexually active. She stressed that they gained knowledge about HIV/AIDS prevention, transmission control, and eradication measures from the program.
The government’s action represents a calculated attempt to tackle the HIV/AIDS pandemic at its source by equipping upcoming leaders with the information and abilities to positively impact their communities.