Next Media, in collaboration with various Ugandan TV and radio stations and critical players in the digital economy, has launched a new CSR campaign to sensitize Ugandans on financial literacy, fraud prevention and the protection of digital income.
The campaign, dubbed “Beera Steady – Be Better,” was officially launched on Tuesday, March 14, 2023, at the Next Media Park. With about 76% of Ugandans using digital financial services for transactions, anyone can fall prey to digital fraud. Digital fraud is a growing concern costing Ugandans billions of shillings, with estimates having the figure near the UGX 100 billion mark in 2022 alone.
Through “Beera Steady – Be Better,” solutions to help Ugandans protect and multiply their financial resources, particularly those in the digital realm, will be the key focus.
The behavioural change campaign will run for a minimum of 24 months, and will utilise the collective resources of key industry players, including MTN Uganda, Airtel Uganda, Equity Bank Uganda, the Uganda Bankers’ Association, the Uganda Communications Commission, the Bank of Uganda, the Ministry of ICT and National Guidance, and other partners.
The campaign aims to empower individuals with the correct information to take control of their financial future and make informed decisions that will enable them to achieve their financial goals. Kin Kariisa, the Group CEO of Next Media, expressed his excitement about the campaign, saying, “We are excited to launch the ‘Beera Steady – Be Better’ campaign as part of our commitment to Inform to Transform our motherland.
This is a two-year behavioural change campaign here to make Ugandans better on the financial literacy front. Now that we are using digital money, how do we work together to secure it?” Anthony Kituuka, the MD of Equity Bank Uganda, commented on the campaign, saying, “We cannot deny that we are in a digital economy. Therefore, it is upon us to ensure the safety of money. “Beera Steady – Be Better” is here to teach our customers and the economy to Be Better and steady.”
Sylvia Mulinge, the CEO of MTN Uganda, added, “If we do “Beera Steady – Be Better” together and do it well, we shall be unstoppable in ensuring the safety and trust of our customers.” Wilbrod Owor, the ED of the Uganda Bankers’ Association, also supported the campaign, saying, “These days, fraud is a full-time business and undermines the economy. Coming together on “Beera Steady – Be Better” to work against it is very important. This will build trust, support digital adoption, and that’s the future. Money has evolved from cowrie shells to gold to digital currency, which is the now and future. This needs to be protected and safeguarded.”
Colonel Emmanuel Katabazi, the Deputy Director General of the Internal Security Organisation and Chair of the Cyber Security Task Force, remarked, “The Minister of Security about a month ago launched our task force on cyber security. On behalf of the Cyber Security Task Force, we are committed to ensuring the digital space is safe and everybody is steady.”
Eng. Irene Kaggwa Sewankambo, the Ag. ED of the Uganda Communications Commission, reiterated the importance of the campaign, saying, “The ‘Beera Steady – Be Better’ campaign is a timely initiative that will help Ugandans navigate the increasingly digital landscape and protect their financial resources. We are slowly going to a cashless economy, and if we want to be part of the national social transformation process, we need to be armed with the correct information.”
Mackay Aomu, the Director National Payments Systems at the Bank of Uganda, said, “I am pleased that “Beera Steady – Be Better” is aligned with the Bank of Uganda mandate; promoting sound financial systems in support of social-economic transformation that is achieved in many ways.”
Dr. Aminah Zawedde, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of ICT and National Guidance, also expressed her support for the campaign, saying, “I appreciate that the private sector and media houses have come together so that we speak to the public as one. Transforming the economy involves transforming everyone from the grassroots up.“
Hon. Dr. Chris Baryomunsi, the Minister of ICT and National Guidance and Guest of Honour at the launch, added, “Our mandate as the Ministry of ICT and National Guidance is to take the lead in the digital transformation of Uganda. We are more than eager to get involved and spread this message across the country, and “Beera Steady – Be Better” is a great vehicle for this.”