Investing in Northern Uganda should not be only about building factories, tourist lodges and mining minerals.
It should also be about investing in its people, and in particular its youth. So many Northern Ugandans have started life in very difficult circumstances due to the ongoing conflict with the LRA.
Now that the conflict has come to an end, it is of the utmost importance to invest in the generation of young adults who are crying out for opportunities to be active in society, so that they can not only earn a living, but also help their region become prosperous. Prospects are limited of course, but Ugandans in the Diaspora could make such a big difference by being willing to invest in start –up projects providing vocational training, financing small businesses, or even building schools in areas short of them. Mentoring is also sorely needed, as these young people need to be encouraged to hope firmly in a brighter future, a crucial step towards avoiding the birth of a generation of disaffected youth that would be more prone to negative behaviour and activities. The youth should be helped to set realistic goals that are within their reach, and be guided along the way on how to achieve them.
Investing in the building up of people may well prove to be the best investment of all, as self-sufficient and happy people are after all the ones making the country peaceful and prosperous, and are also thereby the best ambassadors for the outside world.