KAMPALA – The Uganda Parliamentary Press Association (UPPA) has started its savings and credit Sacco with focus on improving journalists’ welfare.
Speaker Rebecca Kadaga who presided at the launch of the Sacco warned journalists against unprofessional conduct saying their trade thrives on good will and public confidence.
“We expect you to be objective and impartial in your work; we expect you to publish things that are accurate; be accountable in your profession,” said Kadaga, also UPPA patron.
Kadaga said the Sacco is supposed to be a serious enterprise with an ambitious plan to expand and service members’ financial needs.
She donated Shs3 million to the Sacco.
Finance State Minister (Planning), Hon David Bahati said the government will continue capitalizing the Uganda Development Bank (UDB) and urged the Sacco to cash in on its low-interest loans.
“We have agreed to capitalise UDB; there are opportunities for you to get loans from there and invest,” he said.
He cautioned the journalists against bad-mouthing tax measures which he said is the only way to grow the economy and bridge the tax to Gross Domestic Product (GDP) ratio which is now at 13.5 percent.
“We are now at 13.5 percent of GDP; we need money to provide services, how can you say don’t borrow, don’t tax but give us services?” said Bahati. Recounting his history as a petty trader in Kabale town, Bahati said journalists should be enterprising and endeavor to use their power to be truthful and just.
Hon Haruna Kyeyune Kasolo, the Minister of State for Microfinance said a poor journalist is a danger to the profession pledging support to the budding Sacco.
“Poverty compromises professionalism [which is why] I will support this Sacco by extending support in terms of training, workshops, capacity building and any other form of technical support,” he said.
He donated Shs10 million to the Sacco.
Sacco Chairperson, Susan Nawonga promised frugality and transparency.
“We have to build this Sacco before we reap from it; we are going to do this as a team under the supervision of our patron; when the time is due, we expect our members to reap from this Sacco,” she said.
Mr Moses Mulondo, the UPPA President exuded confidence in the viability of the Sacco.