The minister of Information and National guidance Judith Nabakooba has confirmed that the government will give out free TVs and Radio stations to some rural households to aid distance learning during COVID-19.
In her statement issued yesterday to clarify the President’s directives, Nabakooba said that government is set to give out free TVs and Radios to some rural households for distance learning.
In his June 1 address to the nation on the government’s handling of the COVID-19 response, President Museveni said the government had agreed to move forward with distance learning but that the exact way this would be implemented, would be worked out by the Prime Minister’s office.
Although President Museveni said his idea would be to give two TV sets per village to aid distance learning, experts have punched holes in this plan saying implementation of the plan would face far too many challenges ranging from poor access to electricity, safety of children at congregation points and the risk of spreading diseases and other vices among children in the local setting.
But if the government decides to implement the plan, it could prove to be a significant step in empowering local companies that that have started assembling Television sets.
Unconfirmed claims by the former Forum for Democratic Change Party (FDC) president Dr. Kiiza Besigye indicate that the TVs will be assembled in Kapeeka. Although this is yet to be confirmed, Kapeeka is the home of the Namunkekera Rural Industrial Centre, a sprawling industrial complex that houses many value chains ranging from clay and ceramic products to agricultural value chains and electrical products.
The complex is also associated with Hisense, the Chinese company that is reputed for producing high quality TV sets.
The industrial complex is steered by President Museveni’s brother Gen. Salim Saleh.
While launching a face masks and personal protective manufacturing plan in Mbalala Mukono district last week, President Museveni said repeated that Uganda is now ready to embark on import substitution after acquiring machinery to turn locally available resources into finished products.
If these plans are pursued, it will be a major boost to Uganda’s plan to fast track industrialization through the Buy Uganda build Uganda (BUBU) initiative.