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MTN repurposes former Karamoja detention centre into ICT facility

MTN has repurposed the former detention centre into an ICT centre

MTN has repurposed the former detention centre into an ICT centre

Authorities in Nabilatuk district have repurposed a former detention facility for suspected cattle rustlers into a youth centre aimed at promoting digital literacy and education.

Situated within Nabilatuk town council, the facility previously served as a detention centre during cordon and search operations between 2022 and 2023.   

In collaboration with Tocau Karamoja, a youth-led organization focused on empowering the Karamoja region, the district received a fully equipped computer library worth Shs 20 million from MTN Uganda under its transformative MTN Changer Makers Initiative.  

The refurbished facility now boasts modern amenities including furniture, a computer lab, and internet connectivity. Kyeyune Ssenyonjo, Nabilatuk resident district commissioner (RDC), commended the partners for repurposing the facility into a learning centre. 

He acknowledged the facility's previous role in holding criminal elements and emphasized the importance of district support to ensure its proper maintenance and security.

"This was a holding ground for those criminals and it was a very bad time in 2022 because raids were everywhere. The people of Nabilatuk raided bars in Napak, Amudat. Nearly this was a criminal community but to see that a group of youth known as Tocau has come up with a very good idea, a novel idea to use this facility for the children and youth to come here and learn is a a major milestone. I think our task now is to ensure that the facility is well protected," said Ssenyonjo.

Kizito Tebanyang, founder of Tocau Karamoja, highlighted the initiative's potential to enhance computer literacy and education in the district. He emphasized the centre's role in aiding youth in catching up with technology, offering free guidance and teaching services to those interested in learning computer skills and conducting research.  

Simon Peter Loteng, Nabilatuk district senior education officer, expressed optimism that the facility would motivate more youth to engage in computer learning, addressing the existing gap in computer knowledge within the education sector. He underscored the importance of maintaining and securing the facility to prevent vandalism and ensure its longevity.  

Dr Charles Nuwagaba, chief community officer for MTN Uganda in the Karamoja region, and proprietor of Tiffan Enterprises, highlighted MTN's commitment to digital inclusion and youth empowerment through education.

He emphasized the significance of collaborations to inspire, innovate, and invest in the region's youth, noting the transformative potential of digital literacy initiatives. The support from MTN Uganda through its philanthropic arm, MTN Foundation, is seen as a catalyst for a digital revolution in the region, addressing the educational and economic challenges faced by youth.

Nuwagaba pledged to continue supporting the local community in digital literacy and other transformative interventions.

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