The Uganda Bureau of Statistics (UBOS) has sent a team of 146 people to various parts of Amuria District in Eastern Uganda to initiate the collection of data needed to implement the Parish Development Model (PDM).
Okidei Francis, District Commercial Officer who is the PDM district focal person in Amuria, revealed that based on the preparations and sensitizations involved in the program, residents are ready to use the funds for the intended purpose.
“We involved the legitimate beneficiaries from the start by giving them the opportunity to identify their own companies (projects). I think this will help allocate resources where they need to go rather than ending up in the wrong hands,” Okidei said.
He added that once the data collection exercise is completed, the government will be able to identify the exact number of recipients of PDM funds.
“People from the region have already formed groups of 10 to 20 people around a common cause, these must be from the same region. we have already set up verification committees to monitor the authenticity of the projects presented,” he added.
Ajimu Charles, Statistician/Planner and Supervisor in Amuria District, noted that everyone who has undergone training has acquired competent skills and knowledge which they will apply in order to provide reliable and real-time data.
“These 146 agents will cover all 99 parishes, 528 villages with 528 supervisors (chairman LC 1) in a period of 14 days. We have provided them with enough data and those who have poor quality mobile phones, we have advised them to acquire or rent modern phones that are compatible with our data collection software,” Ajimu said.
Elizabeth Amuge, one of the data collectors who attended the training, noted that they gained enough knowledge to ensure that they were reaching out to all members of the community.
“People’s mindset is now already on this program and we know they are ready to provide us with all the information requested in our questionnaires,” Amuge said.
“Many have been reluctant to engage in government programs, especially those that arise during election time, as they believe they are aimed at inducing them to vote for the government in power, but this has happened as elections are still a long way off,” Amuge added.
During the data collection exercise, questionnaires are completed over the phone and data is submitted directly to central servers stationed in Entebbe for further processing.