ISSUE 58 | NOVEMBER 2023

AN OFFICIAL NEWSLETTER OF THE FEDERATION OF UGANDA EMPLOYERS

FUENEWS

THE VOICE OF EMPLOYERS

THE EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR’S MESSAGE

Dear Esteemed Member,

It has been an extraordinary month!

The 12th Annual Women Leadership Conference (AWLC) was convened on Tuesday 7th November under the theme, ‘Women Leaders: Accelerating Good Governance’. The AWLC 2023 aimed to enable women leaders from various sectors of the economy discuss how they have used their leadership positions to influence and impact good governance at all levels.

The keynote address delivered by Eng. Nancy Maluleke, the CEO Ndzalaka Engineering and Projects was complimented by an enlightening panel discussion on good governance practices featuring industry experts Dr. Sarah Bireete, the Executive Director, Centre for Corporate Governance (CCG), Amb. Dickson Ogwang, the Head of Chancery, South Sudan, Ms. Caroline Egesa, the Board Secretary, Uganda Registration Services Bureau (URSB) and Mr. Hassan Saleh, the Managing Director, Multichoice Uganda. In addition, the 21st and 22nd Cohorts of the Female Future Leadership Program (FFP) graduated after successfully completing the program.

As the Employers’ fraternity, we understand the great responsibility that comes with leadership hence we host the FUE-CEO Breakfast Meetings annually to cultivate a support system for business leaders. This high-level meeting gathers over 100 CEOs from diverse sectors of the economy to network and share best practices to promote organisational growth. The FUE-CEO Breakfast Meeting 2023 revolved around the theme, ‘Procedural and Substantive Fairness in the Workplace’. His Lordship, Hon. Judge Anthony Wabwire Musana of the Industrial Court Uganda was the keynote speaker whose presentation addressed people risk management, workplace compliance and repercussions of non-compliance in accordance with the Employment (Amendment) Bill 2022. We remain committed to ensuring Employers maintain good industrial relations for a conducive business environment.

Furthermore, the Federation is mandated to develop a National Business Agenda to address pertinent issues in the world of work. The FUE National Business Agenda (2023-2025) was officially launched at the FUE-CEO Breakfast Meeting on Wednesday 29th November 2023 in partnership with the International Labour Organisation (ILO). The Business Agenda highlights five key areas of focus for the next three years namely increasing access to affordable finance for Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs), fast tracking skills development, revising the existing labour laws to address emerging labour market issues, accelerating social security reforms and promoting socially and environmentally sustainable enterprises as significant aspects to promote economic development. Special appreciation to the ILO and tripartite partners for their contribution to the development of this publication.

As the year gradually comes to an end, we are readily available to serve your interests and needs.

Thank you,
Together for Employers.

Douglas Opio

Executive Director.

CONTENTS

1

THE 12TH ANNUAL WOMEN LEADERSHIP CONFERENCE

The FUE Women’s Executive Chapter (FUEWEC) is focused on promoting gender equality and women empowerment through capacity building and leadership programs. The 12th Annual Women Leadership Conference (AWLC) was convened on Tuesday 7th November 2023 at the Kampala Serena Hotel themed, ‘Women Leaders: Accelerating Good Governance’. Women leaders from the political sector, business community and corporate world were in attendance to learn, share experiences and build professional networks to advance their leadership journey.

Our Chairperson, Eng. Dr. Silver Mugisha in his remarks highlighted the need for competence, risk orientation systems and sustainable leadership to excel in the labour market. He recommended the adoption of women empowerment programs to achieve good governance practices. Eng. Mugisha further advocated for women leaders to invest in self-employment and entrepreneurship to enhance job creation.

Eng. Nancy Maluleke, the keynote speaker advocated for favorable policies supporting women advancement on the African continent. She proposed awareness raising, capacity building and mentorship as key tenets to accelerate good governance at all levels. Eng. Nancy encouraged women leaders to invest in self-development courses and ensure their leadership journey is impactful.

The AWLC 2023 was complimented with an enlightening panel discussion that featured industry experts, Dr. Sarah Bireete, the Executive Director, Centre for Corporate Governance (CCG), Amb. Dickson Ogwang, the Head of Chancery, South Sudan, Ms. Caroline Egesa, the Board Secretary, Uganda Registration Services Bureau (URSB) and Mr. Hassan Saleh, the Managing Director, Multichoice Uganda. The discussions revolved around skills development, resilience, competence, mindset shift, self-confidence, mentorship and coaching as significant aspects to accelerate good governance. Poor leadership, bureaucracy, ignorance, double standards and limited resources were revealed as challenges to good governance.

Congratulations to the 45 graduands of the 21st and 22nd Cohorts for successfully completing the Female Future Leadership Program (FFP). The FFP cohorts this year were a unique group of women leaders from various sectors in the economy as well as the biggest and most diverse class since the inception of the program in Uganda. We believe the knowledge and skills attained will promote transformatory leadership, boost excellent service delivery and build a legacy of effective leadership at personal and professional level.

Special appreciation to our esteemed partners the Confederation of Norwegian Enterprises (NHO) and Private Sector Foundation Uganda (PSFU) for their generous contribution to the success of the AWLC. We remain committed to raising the next generation of women leaders to propel workplaces and businesses to great heights.

Sign up for the 23rd and 24th Cohorts of the 2024 Female Future Leadership Program (FFP). For more information contact info@fuemployers.org | 0392 777 410.

THE FUE-CEO BREAKFAST MEETING 2023

According to Gallup research, profits rise to 29% when leaders are successful at running their organisations hence the need to invest in leadership development programs at the workplace. The FUE-CEO Breakfast Meeting 2023 was convened on Wednesday 29th November from 7:30am (EAT) at Golf Course Hotel Kampala themed, ‘Procedural and Substantive Fairness in the Workplace’. His Lordship, Hon. Judge Anthony Wabwire Musana of the Industrial Court Uganda delivered the keynote address. This high-level meeting is a gathering of business leaders from diverse sectors of the economy to learn, share experiences and build networks to enhance leadership capacity.

Our Executive Director, Douglas Opio applauded Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) for their immense contribution to job creation and economic development. He reiterated FUE’s commitment to supporting business leaders grow their entities to a competitive level. Mr. Opio further appreciated the industrial court representatives for sharing various rulings for the benefit of Employers.

The keynote speaker, His Lordship, Hon. Judge Anthony Wabwire Musana delivered a detailed exposition on legal procedures for termination of employment. He emphasised conducting investigations, holding fair hearings and constituting an impartial committee to handle workplace conflict and disciplinary matters immediately to eliminate litigation. Hon. Judge Anthony additionally shared benefits of a conducive work environment including employee retention, maximum productivity and maintaining the organisation brand. Click the link to access the presentation on Procedural and Substantive Fairness In the Workplace.

During the meeting, the FUE Business Agenda (2023-2025) and Trueworth Documents were officially launched by significant drivers of Uganda’s Economy. Hon. Judge Anthony Wabwire Musana, Ms. Jenifer Bamutaraki, the CEO, Uganda Airlines and Mr. Don Wanyama, the CEO Vision Group endorsed the publications.

The Federation remains committed to ensuring business leaders are empowered and attain valuable skills to propel their organisations to great heights. Onwards and Upwards in strengthening the Employers’ fraternity!

THE LAUNCH OF THE FUE NATIONAL BUSINESS AGENDA (2023-2025)

FUE’s evidence-based lobbying and advocacy agenda engages Employers and other stakeholders to create a conducive business environment. The FUE National Business Agenda (NBA) (2023-2025) was officially launched on Wednesday 29th November 2023 during the FUE-CEO Breakfast Meeting. The Business Agenda identifies policies, roles and regulations that hinder business growth in addition to providing concrete recommendations and reforms to remove existing barriers.

The FUE Business Agenda (2023-2025) was developed in partnership with the International Labour Organisation (ILO) and extensive consultation between with a wide range of stakeholders including the government and trade unions. The NBA highlights five key priority areas;

  • Increase Access to Affordable Finance of Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs)
  • Fast Track Skills Development
  • Revise the Existing Commercial and Labour Laws to Address Emerging Labour Market Issues
  • Accelerate Social Security Reforms
  • Promote Socially and Environmentally Sustainable Enterprises

Therefore, the NBA will allow private sector representatives to share the perspective and concerns of the Employers to government in a unified voice to ensure the agenda is adopted. The NBA also offers possible solutions to address major challenges in the labour market.

Click the links below to view;

EMPLOYERS’ CONSULTATIVE MEETING ON THE DRAFT TVET BILL

The Principles for the Technical Vocational Education and Training (TVET) Bill 2022 were approved by the Cabinet under Minute 247 (CT 2022) and the First Lady who also doubles as the Minister of Education and Sports issued instructions to the First Parliamentary Council to begin the drafting process of the bill. On Wednesday, 5th November 2023, the Federation of Uganda Employers (FUE) in collaboration with the Ministry of Education and Sports organised a consultative meeting for employers on the Draft TVET Bill 2022 at Fairway Hotel Kampala. This was part of a series of consultative meetings held with key stakeholders to obtain recommendations in the fore mentioned draft bill before it is tabled on the floor of parliament for debate into an Act.

The aim of the stakeholders consultative meeting was to solicit technical input into the draft TVET bill, offer responses to inquiries on the funding of TVET, provide a clear definition of an employer in the TVET sector, ascertain the role of employers in the regulation of TVET and to define the practitioners under TVET that need to be regulated. Participants included a select group of employers from different sectors of the economy, Ministry of Education and Sports, Ministry of Justice and Constitutional Affairs and FUE staff among others.

This TVET Bill seeks to establish an employer-led TVET system. Some critical areas of the draft bill include;

  • Establishment of a TVET council to regulate the TVET system. This would be composed of 9 members, 7 of whom (66%) are to be employers’ representatives. The TVET Council would register, license, inspect and accredit TVET institutions and actors; prescribe training fees; accredit international assessment bodies; regulate, and set standards for delivery of TVET; manage the Skills Development Fund; register, and regulate craftsman, technicians, and technologists.
  • Establishment of Sector Skills Expert Committees to be called Sector Skills Councils whose composition is to be 100% employers.
  • Establishment of a Skills Development Fund to be mobilised and managed by the TVET Council led by employers. That is, how the skills development fund can be operationalised in a sustainable manner.

Therefore, FUE will prepare the Employers’ position which will be submitted to the First Parliamentary Council for incorporation into the bill as well as make a presentation of the fore mentioned position to the Parliamentary Committee on Education and sports before the TVET Bill is presented to plenary for debate.

FUE PARTICIPATES IN MONITORING AND EVALUATION WORKSHOP FOR ILO PROSPECTS IMPLEMENTING PARTNERS

The Federation of Uganda Employers (FUE) participated in a three-day capacity building workshop on ‘Results-Based Management’ for the implementing partners of the Partnerships for Improving Prospects for Forcibly Displaced Persons and Host Communities (PROSPECTS) program. The Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) training from 6th to 8th November was organised by the International Labour Organisation (ILO). Participants were representatives from various PROSPECTS Uganda Implementing Partners including National Organisation of Trade Unions (NOTU), Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development (MGLSD), StartHub Africa, Learning Equality, Windle International Uganda, Unleashed Uganda, ANCHOR, Brac Uganda, Wezesha Impact, AVSI, Uppaward Uganda Limited, RICE West Nile, Ripple Effect, Stand for Change, Equity bank, Opportunity Bank, FOTEA among others.

The main objective of the workshop was to strengthen the capacity of PROSPECTS Uganda partners in Results Based Management to move from focusing on outputs to emphasising outcomes and impact reporting of program results. The M & E capacity building training is beneficial to skill partners for the 5th year of implementation when the PROSPECTS program is expected to demonstrate long-term results to enhance capacity, document key results and understand results-based management.

Recommendations;

  • Develop synergies among implementing partners by identifying similar areas of work and joint beneficiaries. Partners should include local government structures as well as entities outside the PROSPECTS Uganda Implementing Partners to scale opportunities
  • A culture of periodic monitoring, evaluation, proper documentation and reporting progress of the interventions against mapped PROSPECTS indicators done in an efficient and effective manner should be developed based on organisational mapped indicators
  • Focus should be placed on change brought about by program interventions and documentation of results beyond activity and output levels of implementation
  •  Ethical considerations for data protection, integrity and client consent to ensure that the rights, dignity and privacy of participants are respected

The concerted efforts among PROSPECTS Uganda implementing partners and the commitment to improved monitoring and evaluation systems coupled with robust results measurement is pivotal in fostering continuous improvement and successful outcomes in securing decent and gainful employment in the labor market for forcibly displaced persons and host communities.

FUE-TINKR PARTICIPATE IN SDG STUDENT INNOVATION CHALLENGE 2023

The Federation of Uganda Employers (FUE), Makerere University and Tinkr in collaboration with universities in Sweden, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Somalia organised the SDG Cap Student Innovation Challenge 2023 from November 18th to 19th, 2023. This event was part of the project ‘Building Capacity for Sustainable Development in the Fragile States’ which aims to promote and encourage action towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) among targeted stakeholders.

The innovation challenge is a positive step towards enhancing an employer-driven educational strategy by fostering increased cooperation between academia and employers to ensure that graduates possess the skills that employers seek for enhanced employability. FUE’s contributions to this collaboration included conducting an employer survey to identify real-world challenges faced by employers specifically with fresh university graduates and the potential skills they may need from those graduates. Additionally, the Federation facilitated and mentored students during the two-day challenge and served on the panel of judges.

The objectives of the SDG Cap Student Innovation Challenge include strengthening students’ understanding of innovation for sustainable development, developing innovative solutions to real-world challenges faced by employers in Uganda, enhancing students’ employability and facilitating beneficial exchange between higher education institutions and employer organisations. Teamwork, communication, pitching, analytical thinking, problem-solving through 3design thinking, gender inclusion and technological innovation were implications of the challenge. Furthermore, students won prizes that will help them develop and scale up their ideas as well as access to professional networking opportunities.

The proposed solutions to various problem statements were reviewed by a panel of experts from FUE, Outbox, Tinkr, Makerere University and civil society representatives. The criteria for selecting the best innovation solutions included creativity and innovativeness, design, practicality, user-centricity, originality, business opportunity, implementation and effective use, storytelling, teamwork and impact.

The Federation believes these collaborations build stronger synergies with partners to identify and engage suitable employers for post-student innovation challenge activities such as mentorship, workshops, networking and other activities focused on strengthening students’ employability.

FUE AND SAFEBODA SIGN PARTNERSHIP

On Thursday 23rd November, FUE and SafeBoda Uganda signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to extend safe, affordable and convenient transport services to the Employers’ fraternity. Our Executive Director and Ms. Catherine Tuline Kafumbe, Country Director, Safeboda were the key signatories of the MOU. They both believe this partnership will enhance secure transportation and delivery of product of services as well as ease business operations. Safeboda, is an esteemed member of the Federation and we look forward to a fruitful partnership in our service to Employers.

NUDIPU COMMEMORATES 36TH ANNIVERSARY

As the secretariat of the Uganda Business and Disability Network (UBDN), we were delighted to participate in the National Union of Disabled Persons in Uganda (NUDIPU) 36th anniversary celebrations on 14th November 2023 in Kyambogo. The anniversary theme was, ‘Promotion of an Inclusive Environment in the Employment Sector for All: My Role’. Hon. Hellen Grace Asamo, the State Minister for Disability Affairs was the Guest of Honor.

In her speech, Hon. Hellen Grace Asamo rallied for collective efforts to promote disability inclusive practices nationally. She stressed the commitment of the Government to ensure PwDs

receive equal opportunities and gainful employment. Hon. Asamo also encouraged PwDs to invest in skills development, keep a positive attitude and believe in their abilities to excel in different roles and responsibilities.

Mr. Douglas Opio, our Executive Director commended NUDIPU for the achievements to advocating for disability inclusion over the last 36 years. He emphasised FUE’s role in ensuring organisations recruit PwDs through conducting sensitisations, trainings and maintaining partnerships with disability focused organisations. Mr. Opio further encouraged Employers to join the UBDN, an employer led network for practical skills and knowledge to promote disability inclusion at the workplace.

The achievements of NUDIPU over the years include;

  • Advocating for equal education opportunities and fighting discrimation of children with disabilities in school
  • Working with the government to provide reasonable accommodation for candidate students and employing qualified teachers to cater for special needs children
  • Participation in the development of laws and policies to promote disability inclusion
  • Empowerment of PwDs to overcome life challenges
  • Representation of PwDs at all levels such as parliament, local councils and all leadership spaces

In addition, Employers promoting disability inclusion were recognised for their tremendous work i.e. Uganda Breweries Ltd (UBL), Makerere University Business School (MUBS), Stanbic Bank, Centenary Bank and Goal Uganda. We applaud the Employers’ fraternity for the best practices in hiring and retaining PwDs within the workforce.
There is need for a mind-set change, awareness campaigns, review of Human Resource policies, change of organisation culture and partnerships with disability focused organisations such as Light for the World to increase the employment of PwDs in the labour market. Its significant to note that disability inclusion is a step-by-step process that requires concerted efforts from all relevant stakeholders.

To join the UBDN, contact Henry Sabah, the FUE Disability Inclusion Focal Person on henry.sabah@fuemployers.org

FUE PARTICIPATES IN NUDIPU’S X SPACE

According to the Uganda Bureau of Statistics (UBOS) 2016 report, 12.4% of the Ugandan population lives with some form of disability implying that approximately 4.5 million Ugandans are persons with disability hence a development concern. On Tuesday 7th November, we participated in National Union of Disabled Persons of Uganda (NUDIPU) X Space under the theme, ‘Employment of Persons With Disabilities’. The space was moderated by Solomon Serwajja with Guest Speakers including Our Executive Director, Mr. Douglas Opio, Ms. Esther Kyozira, the Chief Executive Officer, NUDIPU, Mr. Silvester Kasozi, the Country Director, Light for the World and Mr. Yonah Wasswa, Chairperson, National Council for Persons with Disabilities.

Our Executive Director in his presentation revealed that FUE in collaboration with key stakeholders created the Uganda Business and Disability Network (UBDN), a network of Employers promoting disability inclusion at the workplace. He reiterated low levels of awareness, failure to implement policies and limited 

supply of resources as challenges for employing Persons with Disabilities (PwDs). Mr. Opio also emphasised that employers are now embracing disability inclusion through developing an inclusive work culture, designing accommodative job adverts, revamping office structures and adapting an impartial recruitment process.

In addition, the need to transform support to employing PwDs through funding projects for empowerment, easing access to financial services and formulating policies that advance inclusive employment were accentuated.

We are committed to working with various stakeholders such as Light for the World, NUDIPU and Sight Savers to promote disability inclusion in the world of work. Through the UBDN, we conduct sensitisations and career fairs to equip Employers with the skills and knowledge to recruit and retain PwDs.

If you missed the X space, here is a recap;

DEVELOPMENT OF EMPLOYMENT (APPRENTICESHIP) REGULATIONS WORKSHOP

According to the International Labour Organisation (ILO), the term ‘apprenticeship’ should be understood as a form of education and training that is governed by an apprenticeship agreement, that enables an apprentice to acquire the competencies required to work in an occupation through structured and remunerated or otherwise financially compensated training consisting of both on-the-job and off-the-job learning and that leads to a recognised qualification.

The Federation of Uganda Employers (FUE) was represented at a workshop organised by the Ministry of Gender, Labour, and Social Development (MGLSD) in collaboration with Enabel to develop the Employment (Apprenticeship) Regulations. The workshop took place at Imperial Heights, Entebbe, from 20th to 24th November 2023 also attended by the Ministry of Justice and Constitutional Affairs (MoJCA), Directorate of Technical, Vocational Education and Training (TVET), the Directorate of Industrial Training (DIT) of the Ministry of Education and Sports (MoES), National Organisation of Trade Unions (NOTU) and Central Organisation of Free Trade Unions (COFTU).

The development of Employment (Apprenticeship) Regulations is in line with the Cabinet Minute No. 358 (CT 2018) that approved the Uganda National Apprenticeship Framework which was developed by the MGSLD. The same cabinet minute directed the Ministry to urgently design and implement the National Apprenticeship Scheme in key sectors of the economy. Similarly, Quality Apprenticeships Recommendation (2023) was one of the resolutions of the General Conference of during its 111th Session on 5th June 2023 in Geneva to member countries including Uganda for implementation. The National Apprenticeship Scheme aims at developing employability, self-employment and labour productivity enhancement opportunities mainly for the youth.

It’s important to note that the workshop identified several gaps in the existing employment regulations and proposals made from which the drafting team in the Ministry of Justice and Constitutional will draft Apprenticeship Regulations. Once the drafting of these regulations is concluded, a wider group of stakeholders will convene for a validation exercise. The final document will then be submitted to the MGSLD for the last formalities before these regulations are gazetted and adopted for implementation.

THE EMPLOYERS’ INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS CLINIC

One of FUE’s core departments is Employment Relations and Legal that ensures Employers comply with the requirements of the law and strengthen industrial relations at the workplace. The Employers’ Industrial Relations Clinic was convened on Thursday 23rd November 2023 from 8:30am (EAT) at the FUE Training Centre in Kiwanga-Namanve. Participants included Legal Practitioners, Human Resource Professionals, Business Leaders among others.

During the Industrial Relations Clinic, participants had the opportunity to discuss restructuring, redundancy, retrenchment and collective termination because certain situations may cause Employers to downsize their workforce. The training provided a detailed understanding on procedures of laying off employees in accordance with the Employment Act 2006 and the Employment Regulations 2011 to support Employers from long court proceedings leading to loss of finances and time. Additionally, participants were notified on the industrial court awards that elaborate the legal way to carry out these processes.

Its expedient for all Employers to attain basic skills and knowledge to promote good employment relations at the workplace for a conducive work environment. We are readily available to provide guidance and support for Employers with cases at the industrial court to negotiate amicable conflict resolution and avert litigation.

FUE MEMBER CEO PROFILE

Follow us on Social Media