By Mitchell Jena, firstname.lastname@example.org
Parents from Karamojong community have been warned against sending their children to grazing fields and gold mines during school hours.
Speaking during an interview, the Minister for Karamoja Affairs, John Byabagambi said that the frequent actions have contributed to the dropping performance and low enrolment of children in most school in Karamoja sub-region.
“There is low enrolment in schools and children’s performances are dropping because most of them are sent to graze ands to the gold mines during school time,” said the minister.
The minister lamented that despite efforts by the national government to keep children in school, parents have not allowed their children to have freedom of education.
He pointed out that schools constructed by the government have remained deserted as children kept away from schools.
“Schools have been built, but they have no pupils since most children remain in their homes during the school hours. That is a shame,” said the devastated minister.
Byabagambi called on local leaders to ensure that laws that will ensure all parents take their children to schools are passed.
He advised that penalties should be given to parents who are still keeping children who have reached school-going age.
“Educating our children will help to bring changes and serious developments in Karamoja,” he said.
Nakapiripirit district education officer, Raymond Korobe the high number of school drop outs is posing a threat to the development of the area.
“They are grazing their livestock, mining gold and others are just loitering in the trading centres, “he said.
Nakapiripirit District has about 40,000 schools going age children who are not at school.