Jinja DRCC

Jinja City Deputy RCC takes lead in transforming ghetto youth as State House steps in 

(Last Updated On: 29 August 2023)

Jinja | Ignore them at your own risk if you mistakenly think and believe that the ghettos are a no-go zone because of the type of people who live there.

The ghetto youth live in squalid conditions with hardly any modern social amenities expected in any urban centre in the current times.

These are the ghetto youth who can be likened to the red ants, known as (amage in Luganda, mori in Lango or amuge in Kumam), that can quietly launch attacks at a home in the wee hours of the night forcing family members out.

The worst part of it is that only one of the red ants can make life hell if it finds its way inside the inner wears of any man or woman. You cannot use a stick or an iron bar or a machete to get rid of it but must be gentle.

Like hunters who focus more on lions, elephants, buffalos, leopards and cheetahs plus snakes, so do many Ugandans who ignore and look down upon the ghetto youth, who like the red ants can be very upsetting human beings.

Also read: Jinja’s Sheikh narrates how he fled Uganda, returns to complete the unfinished business

To Jinja City Deputy RCC in charge of Northern Division Lydia Kalemera, the so-called ghetto youth who face stigma and discrimination because of their lifestyle can be transformed into better citizens.

Kalemera also knows that these youths, once left on their own without guidance, can always cause social mayhem to the population thus undermining all the efforts of socio-economic transformation put in place by the government.

“…I have always looked at them with a positive mind that these boys and girls, some who have become men and women, can be very useful assets to the community in which they live…,” Kalemera says.

It’s not surprising that more than 300 youth calling themselves reformed ghetto youth willingly gathered over the weekend at St John SS Wakitaka in Mafubira, Jinja City to interact with officials from State House.

As early as 8:00 am the youth, most in their trademark dreadlocks, bracelets, bangles, leggings and the so-called balance-trousers plus damaged overcoats and jackets, waited patiently until 11:00 am when the meeting began.

This is unusual for a group whose members have to hustle daily to put food on the table for their ‘dogs’ and ‘beere’ ghetto slang for children and girlfriends or wives respectively.

Referring to Kalemera as Mama, the ghetto promised loyalty, saying it was the first time any government official approached them with love and respect as opposed to threats and arrests.

“…mama we are happy for coming to us in love, We were tired of being arrested all the time, we are also human beings, now give us the hooks so that we go fishing for our daily bread…,” the ghetto boys who also have their own ‘RDC’ chorused.

Now the future seems bright because Faruk Kirunda, the Deputy Press Secretary to President Yoweri Museveni and Maj Emma Kutesa, Presidential Assistant in charge of Special Operations have assured the ghetto youth of the necessary support they need.

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