FORT PORTAL, September 13, 2023 – The deputy speaker of parliament, Thomas Tayebwa has asked the King of Tooro Kingdom, Oyo Nyimba Kabamba Iguru Rukidi IV to be a partner in promoting the Parish Development Model [PDM] to fight poverty among his subjects.
Tayebwa who was speaking on Tuesday at the Kingdom Palace Karuzika in Fort Portal City during Oyo’s 28th coronation anniversary said that kings/ cultural leaders in the country play an important role in promoting government programmes.
“Cultural leaders have a big say in their kingdoms and if we are to fight poverty, we need to have them partner with us. I want to commend the King of Tooro who has been behind the fight against HIV/ AIDs and is now spearheading environmental conservation. We really need you as a partner in promoting PDM,” Tayebwa said.
He urged people in Tooro and the country at large to embrace PDM to fight poverty in their households. Under the PDM, government wants to 3.5 million households still in subsistence economy to the money economy.
“Fighting poverty needs a collective responsibility and therefore we need to join hands. Government is doing its best to ensure its people get out of poverty,” Tayebwa e said.
Quoting the 2022 Global Wealth Report by Credit Suisse, Tayebwa said that income inequality in the world is alarming with the latest figures indicating that 52.5 percent of the world population now owns less than 1.25 percent of the global wealth.
“We have to work to overcome this. Your Majesty, I know if we work with you, the PDM will help to reduce this kind of income one quality,” he said.
He further appealed to the people of Tooro to stop land fragmentation saying dividing land leads to poverty in families and hinders government efforts to fight poverty through modern agricultural projects.
Tayebwa urged King Oyo and his leadership to sensitise the people against land fragmentation saying the practice which is rampant among the predominantly agriculture-dependent communities threatens food security and is a source of poverty.
King Oyo said it has not been an easy road for the 28 years he has been on the throne, but recognised God for enabling him to lead his subjects.
He said among the things he is focusing on is to ensure that his subjects have income at the household level through commercial farming.
“To achieve my dream of ensuring that all my subjects have improved on their household income through agriculture, I have established a model farm in Bugaaki where you can go and learn good farming practices,” he said.
King Oyo appealed to his subjects to utilise the model farm to benefit both the Kingdom and the general population in it [Kingdom].
Return of the kingdom’s property
Tayebwa promised to work with the kingdom representatives to ensure that it is fully compensated by the government for the loss of its properties.
“I ask the people of Tooro to keep calm as I work with the kingdom representatives to ensure that the compensation process is quickened. Very soon Tooro Kingdom will be compensated like other kingdoms in the country and people will get land titles,” he noted.
Oyo emphasised that as the kingdom is working with government to ensure that all its land is returned. However, he noted that nobody has authority to chase people from the kingdom land but to agree on how to stay together.
On Tuesday, thousands of people from across the globe gathered at the Tooro Kingdom Palace Karuzika in Fort Portal City to celebrate King Oyo’s 28th coronation anniversary.
King Oyo ascended to the throne on September 12, 1995, after the death of his father, King David Patrick Kaboyo making him the youngest ruling monarch in the whole world.
Tooro kingdom was founded in 1822, when Omukama Kaboyo Olimi I, the eldest son of Omukama of Bunyoro, broke away and established his own independent kingdom.
Tooro kingdom was part of the large empire of Kitara under the reign of the Babiito dynasty which dates way back to the 16th century.
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