In-depth

Peace Rings: Resolving conflict peacefully through community groups
Through the Northern Uganda Early Recovery Programme, UNDP has supported the formation of peace rings as an alternative justice mechanism to settle disputes amicably in communities in the war-ravaged Lango sub-region, in Northern Uganda. Photo: UNDP Uganda

Crisis Prevention and Recovery is an important cross-cutting component of UNDP's Country Programme in Uganda. Through its work in Crisis Prevention & Recovery (CPR), UNDP contributes to the National Development Plan (NDP) and Northern Uganda recovery priorities set forth in the Peace, Recovery and Development Plan (PRDP) and is focused on specific CPR outputs largely in post conflict Northern Uganda including Karamoja. 

Specifically, UNDP Uganda is supporting the Government of Uganda in disaster risk reduction, prevention and recovery support to communities in Northern Uganda, stabilizing communities, supporting short-term employment and livelihoods, re-establishing governance and the rule of law, and promoting gender equality with the goal of ensuring incorporation of necessary elements of crisis prevention and timely recovery support with a  focus on building skills and capacities of national institutions and communities – in order that risks of disasters and violent conflict are minimized and a foundation for sustainable development secured.

The goal and objectives of the projects are consistent with the NDP, the PRDP, particularly contributions to those outcomes that target vulnerable communities.  Additionally, the strategies for these projects are also in line with the respective District Development Plans (DDPs).

Support to the Office of the Prime Minister

Repairing community roads to revive local economies
Repairing community roads to revive local economies, and improve service delivery is one of the many ways UNDP has contributed to Government of Uganda's Peace, Recovery and Development Plan for Northern Uganda. Photo: UNDP Uganda

UNDP has been supporting the Office of the Prime Minister in Northern Uganda recovery efforts following the signing of cessation of hostilities agreement in 2006 between the Lord's Resistance and the Government of Uganda. Notable has been the support to early recovery efforts including the setup of the Mine Action Centre, and support to Information Management Systems (IM) specific to crisis recovery and indirectly linked to employment generation.

In order to expedite the full integration and the development of Northern Uganda, the Government launched the Peace, Recovery and Development Plan for Northern Uganda. The plan has been supported by a multiplicity of development partners focusing on rehabilitation of infrastructure supporting the return of internally displaced communities, re-establishment of local governance structures in Northern Uganda and critically providing humanitarian assistance to displaced communities.

During the implementation of PRDP I (July 2009/June 2012) the United Nations through the Northern Uganda Peace Building Joint Programme mobilised a total of US$16 million. The agencies involved in the implementation of this programme were OHCHR, UNICEF, UNFPA, UNDP, IOM, WFP, FAO and UNCDF. The Peace Building Fund Joint Programme had three inter-related objectives

Averting Conflict in Karamoja

Preventing crisis, ensuring recovery of communities in Northern Uganda.
A community Centre in Moroto town constructed with funding from UNDP. Photo: Matthias Mugisha/UNDP Uganda

The Karamoja region, which is located in North Eastern Uganda, occupies the most remote and ecologically fragile landscape.  Besides chronic poverty, drought and other hazards, Karamoja experiences protracted inter- and intra-clan violent conflicts over cattle and access to pasture and resources, cross-border incursions and a high level of small arms proliferation.

In Karamoja, UNDP has played a significant role in building sustainable peace and development by supporting the Government, development partners and local communities in the implementation of the Karamoja Integrated Disarmament and Development Program (KIDDP) and the Peace Recovery and Development Plan (PRDP) for Northern Uganda.

A mid-term review of the PRDP I conducted in 2011 showed that positive progress had been made in its implementation, but with glaring gaps in some areas. For instance, most sub-counties reported that with the assistance of the PRDP I, better services were now being delivered, but there was need for greater emphasis on functionality of government institutions. While provision of economic infrastructure had yielded some positive results, support to farmers and provision of economic opportunities for youth had not been adequately addressed. Most importantly, the recognised conflict drivers such as access to land, youth employment and full community accepted reintegration of ex-combatants were considered not to have been adequately assessed and addressed.

With the extension of the PRDP into PRDP II (July 2012-June 2015), UNDP with support from BCPR is continuing to support Northern Uganda recovery efforts in the sub regions of Acholi, Lango and Karamoja through three projects namely:

1.      Local development and social cohesion in Northern Uganda;

2.      Poverty reduction for former IDPs and communities affected by conflict and drought;

3.      Strengthening Uganda's disaster preparedness and management capacities.