REMARKS BY HON. ABDUL BAHARI, CHIEF ADMINISTRATIVE SECRETARY, MINISTRY OF LABOUR AND SOCIAL PROTECTION, DURING THE 4TH MEETING OF THE SECTORAL COUNCIL ON GENDER, YOUTH, CHILDREN, SOCIAL PROTECTION AND COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT
DATE: 11TH MAY 2018
VENUE: IMPERIAL ROYALE HOTEL, KAMPALA UGANDA
Deputy Secretary General,
Let me start by extending the apologies of the Hon. (Amb.) Ukur Yatani, Cabinet Secretary, Ministry of Labour and Social Protection, who due to exigencies of duty was not able to attend this meeting. It is my great pleasure to join you here today when you are making the final recommendations and adoption of the discussions that have been going on since Tuesday 8th May 2018.
I would like to thank the Republic of Uganda for hosting the 4th meeting of the Sector Council on Gender, Youth, Children, Social Protection and Community Development.
I am happy that this meeting will consider policy documents on gender and children. I also note that the mandate of the sector is broad and pays attention to issues of gender, children, youth, Persons with Disabilities (PWDs), older persons, social protection and community development. However, I am deeply concerned that the sector’s activities are more skewed towards gender and children issues. Therefore, there is need for special consideration to ensure an all-inclusive approach in the design and programing of the activities of the sector.
The EAC Secretariat should be able to promote the youth issues taking into account that they constitute over 60% of the population in the region. It is also prudent that the secretariat gives special consideration to the older persons, PWDs and vulnerable children by designing targeted programmes.
I take cognizance of the fact that this sectoral meeting has covered much ground among them;
- EAC Gender Policy;
- EAC Gender Equality, Equity and Development Bill; and,
- An Action Plan to implement EAC Child Policy.
I also note that this Sectoral Council is beginning to experience a progressive growth. We are now moving from developing policies and action plans to making directives and decisions that are geared towards the design and implementation of programmes and activities to actualize our inter-state cooperation.
As a country, we are happy to report that since the 3rd Sectoral Council of March 2016, we have continued to implement programmes that complement our regional commitments. Some of these programmes include:-
- Establishment and operationalization of the National Youth Council;
- Cash transfers for the elderly, vulnerable children and Persons with Disabilities;
- Establishment of children’s assemblies which provide forums for children participation in policy making;
- Review of the various statutes such as the Children’s Act, Youth Policy, and Social Protection Policy; and,
- The hosting of the Social Protection Conference to lobby for the scaling up of investments in social protection, facilitation of the effective delivery of Vision 2030 and achievement of the SDGs.
Finally, let me reiterate Kenya’s commitment to the implementation of the outcomes of this meeting and to continuously support all the facets of the EAC
I thank you all especially the senior officials who have worked tirelessly to make this process a great success. My heartfelt gratitude goes to the EAC Secretariat for organizing and making sure the meeting met its desired objectives. I also appreciate all the Principal/Permanent Secretaries for making time to contribute to the deliberations.