– The government through the Office of the Prime Minister (OPM) has on Tuesday, January 14, 2020, signed nine grants contracts amounting to EUR 27 million (UGX.114.5b) for implementing development projects in poverty-stricken districts of Northern Uganda.
The affirmative action programme is part of the Development Initiative for Northern Uganda (DINU), a government project, supported by European Union aimed at improving livelihoods in the five sub-regions of Acholi, Karamoja, Lango, Teso and West Nile.
DINU is a complex multi-spectral programme by OPM being implemented in 37 districts for the duration of six years between (2017-2023) focusing on three specific interlinked sectors of food security, Nutrition and Livelihoods; Infrastructure and Good Governance.
The OPM which is responsible for the overall supervision of DINU has since selected nine grantees to take on the project after a very competitive process through the DINU Call for concept Notes that was launched in 2019.
These include Caritas Switzerland; International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (ITTA); National Research Organisation (NARO), Lutheran World Federation (LWF), Care Denmark and Konrad Adenauer Stiftung (KAS
Others include Center for Health, Human Rights Centre and Development (CEHURD), ADOL Health Care Initiative and DIAKONIA-Sweden. All these were handed contracts in a meeting signed on Tuesday, January 14, at OPM office in Kampala.
The OPM also assured the country that that process for grantees said the process was handled with due diligence.
Ms Christine Guwatudde, the OPM Permanent Secretary who chaired the meeting warned grantees against corruption and extortion.
“We expect the implementation of the various activities I grant actions to be of very high standards,” she urged grantees adding that; “each will synergize with other innervations and partners in the region, in particular, coordinate closely with the district local governments.”
Ms Guwatudde also asked the grantees to strengthen their implementation approaches and deliverables and avoid any waste of resources on activities that would not translate into changes in the lives of the target community and all other beneficiaries.
Under this arrangement, she explained that the funds will be awarded in two lots for projects in five sub-regions to improve livelihoods through increased production of diversified food, enhanced market opportunities and better maternal and child nutrition as well as to improve performance and accountability of local governments through strengthened participation of communities.
Mr Cedric Merel, the Head of Cooperation at the European Union Delegation to Uganda, said DINU is a flagship programme of EU partnership with the Government of Uganda through which the European Union continues to support the consolidation of peace, stability and socio-economic development of Northern Uganda. Poverty, food insecurity and undernutrition remain significant challenges for many people in the region, and the continuing refugee inflow from South Sudan and DRC is posing additional challenges in certain districts.”
“EU will stand together with government to ensure that this flagship programme brings the expected benefits to the population in the targeted districts,” he said.
Mr.Keith Muhakanizi, the Permanent Secretary to the Treasury, Ministry of Finance, MoFPED, said that as a contracting authority of the DINU Call, the finance ministry is happy to facilitate the process leading to the award of large grant contracts under which the Government shall work with different actors in the development of Northern Uganda.
He explained that his ministry is pleased to award contracts under which government shall work closely with different partners in support of the DINU programme implementation in Northern Uganda.
Some of the beneficiary districts of the DINU programme are Agago, Amuru, Gulu, Kitgum, Lamwo, Nwoya, Omoro and Pader in Acholi Sub-region.
Abim, Amudat, Kaabong, Kotido, Moroto, Nakapiripirit, and Napak (Karamoja); Alebtong, Amolatar, Apac, Dokolo, Kole, Lira, Otuke and Oyam in Lango Sub Region.
AMuriat and Katakwi for Teso region while Adjumani, Arua, Koboko, Maracha, Moyo, Nebbi, Yumbe and Zombo represent the West Nile region.