A section of legislators on the Parliamentary Forum for Youths and Children have warned the Minister of State in Charge of Youth Affairs, Florence Nakiwala Kiyingi against suffocating the talent of young people in the country in the name of promoting education.
Addressing the media at Parliament on Monday, the lawmakers led by the National Youth Affairs MP, Ann Adeke, Mwine Mpaka who represents Youths from the Western region and Gaffa Mbwakekamwa the MP for Kasambya county, noted that the Minister should mind her business of lobbying for youths and getting street children off the streets.
The legislators’ comments follow threats by Minister Nakiwala that the talented seven-year-old musician, Patrick Ssenyonjo also known as Fresh Kid could face jail if he does not get back to school.
The youth MP for Western Region, Mwine Mpaka noted that the youths look at music as a source of inspiration and should be left to enjoy such freedoms without any form of hindrances.
Mpaka said there are a lot of ventures that the Minister can use to promote the plight of children instead of putting up a fight against those who have come out to promote their talents.
“This young boy is going to help so many people to come out and expose their talents, we have heard countries like Saudi Arabia investing USD 64bn in their entertainment and music industry, but it is very unfortunate that in are country we not investing in the industry,” Mpaka said.
He added, “I request the Minister to concentrate on lobbying resources for our people for budget allocations since more money is needed to develop talents like that of Fresh Kid instead of blocking it”.
Kasambya County MP, Mbwatekamwa said that it is absurd that the Minister who would have come out to offer all relevant support to Fresh Kid to enhance his talent, instead has resorted to witch-hunt against the child.
To show his solidarity with Fresh Kid, Mbwatekamwa pledged to sponsor him do more recording as well as collaborations with other big musicians in the country so as to grow his talent.
“We appreciate what the managers of Fresh Kid are doing but on board co-opt Mbwatekamwa; I am ready sponsor him with effect from this month and sponsor at least one hit,” Mbwatekamwa said.
Adeke called on the Minister to guard Fresh Kid’s talent instead of suffocating it while hiding behind claims of education because the two can be done concurrently.
She however expressed concern that children like Fresh Kid might be exploited by their managers as they don’t have any say in regard to contracts made.