President Yoweri Museveni was in Pader District on Saturday where he joined fellow senior citizens in commemorating the International Day for Older Persons.
Speaking at the event, Museveni said in the traditional setting, older persons were considered the owners of the home, land and were held in high esteem.
“But things are changing now and we must place measures to protect and help them in their challenges.”
He cited one such intervention as the Social Assistance Grant for Empowerement (SAGE) programme under the Ministry of Gender, where the government and some development partners extend a monthly stipend to the elderly.
He said the programme targets the 100 oldest persons in a district and is expected to cover up to 40 districts by 2021.
“The stipend is still little and so is the coverage but it’s a good start.”
He encouraged the young people to treat elders with respect and dignity.
Meanwhile, the president decided to travel all the way by road from Kampala to Pader so that he could inspect the work done on the roads and also see how people are using the land.
“It was a refreshing experience and I am happy with the roadworks and the general developments, including in places whose recent dark past we know too well.”
He added: “It gives me confidence that we are on the right track.”