Consolidated Appeal for Uganda 2009

19 November 2008

The situation across much of conflict-affected northern Uganda continues to progress along the transition from humanitarian to recovery and development action.  In 2009, distinct humanitarian needs will continue to require a coordinated international response, even as recovery and development is recognised as the dominant paradigm across the majority of existing areas of operation.  Indeed, the humanitarian action outlined in the 2009 Consolidated Appeal for Uganda should be considered as an essential support to promote further gains such as those made since the signing of the original Cessation of Hostilities between the Government of Uganda and the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) in August 2006, despite the lack of a conclusive end to the peace process.  It is vital, however, that added urgency be placed on increasing the impact of recovery and development activities by both the Government of Uganda and the international community in their areas of comparative advantage in order to consolidate these peace dividends.

By contrast, a third consecutive year of drought, below-normal harvests and animal disease, coupled with the historic marginalisation of the region, has jeopardised the food, nutritional and livelihood security of up to 800,000 people in Karamoja (80% of the region’s population).[1]The severity of the crisis has and will continue to necessitate targeted humanitarian actions complementing longer-term development programming, which will prove the sole means of ensuring that this vulnerable region attains a similar level of development as the rest of the country.Additionally, continued vulnerability to natural hazards, particularly drought, floods and outbreaks of infectious human, animal and crop diseases, and weak existing capacity at local and district levels to prepare for and respond to potential disasters mandate action be taken to strengthen disaster preparedness and response capacity in keeping with the Hyogo Framework.  The continued presence of more than 146,400 refugees also requires humanitarian action to meet the needs of those who have sought shelter in the country.

Overall, four separate spheres of humanitarian needs are seen to require a concerted response in the coming year, corresponding to four distinct regions of the country: Acholi, Teso, Karamoja and the refugee-hosting areas of West Nile/Western Uganda.  Thus, the 2009 CAP has been developed and is presented according to the regional specificities at play – particularly with regard to the response plans developed by the clusters/sectors.  However, three strategic objectives have been commonly arrived at through the individual regional consultations, These are: 1) to supplement government efforts to provide basic services that save lives and alleviate suffering, as the basis for creating the conditions for achieving the three durable solutions[2]; 2) to enhance food and nutritional security to save lives, alleviate suffering and kick-start livelihoods; and 3) to contribute to strengthening district capacity for emergency preparedness and response.

Reflecting both the diversity of regional humanitarian contexts and the commonality of strategic objectives developed throughout the CAP 2009 process, all projects have been prioritised on a regional basis, according to the weighted importance of the 2009 strategic objectives to which they respond.

Thus, in Acholi, the specific context and planned response emphasizes the humanitarian needs of the region’s remaining population of internally displaced persons (IDPs), particularly those of extremely vulnerable individuals (EVIs) who face additional challenges to the achievement of a durable solution to their displacement, as well as for vulnerable groups in transit sites and villages of origin, in total a population of some 606,000.  Given the importance of access to life-saving basic services in promoting the achievement of durable solutions in the region and the relatively greater food security that increased access to cultivable land and lesser vulnerability to natural hazards, projects to be undertaken in Acholi have been tiered across the clusters/sectors by prioritising them in order of their response to the strategic objectives, where A corresponds to the first strategic objective, B to the second and C to the third.

Similarly, in Teso, the specific context and needs-based response has led to the identification of an estimated 60,160 individuals as a target population encompassing remaining IDPs, particularly EVIs, as well as vulnerable groups in return areas, including parts of the host community.  Thus, projects prioritised as A again respond to the first strategic objective.  However, given the specific vulnerability of the region to multiple natural hazards, projects prioritised as B on the three-tier system respond to the third strategic objective, while C projects respond to the second.

In Karamoja, where the successive years of drought and dependence on largely pastoralist livelihoods threatened by the ravages of animal disease have brought the majority of the population into a situation of acute food insecurity, projects that respond to the second strategic objective have been given the A priority, and those responding to the third the B priority, while those seeking to supplement basic services, while essential, have been given the C priority.  This also reflects the importance of viewing the humanitarian response in Karamoja as a sub-set – albeit an urgent one – of the much greater need for sustained developmental commitment in the region.

 Throughout the development of the 2009 appeal, the humanitarian community has continued the process, started at the 2008 mid-year review, of sharpening its focus to concentrate on those most urgent and life-saving actions, while trusting that the unambiguous need to consolidate the peace dividends accrued to date will be met by recovery and development counterparts operating under national leadership, whether at the level of central, district or local government.  A definition of humanitarian action in Uganda in 2009 has been jointly developed and agreed, to facilitate this sharpening of focus.

On the basis of the above, therefore, the humanitarian community in Uganda is requesting a total of $225,288,099 to meet the most urgent humanitarian needs of approximately 1.6 million vulnerable individuals across the four regions of humanitarian operation in 2009.

[1]According to WFP, the number of people in Karamoja affected by food and attendant livelihood insecurity could rise to as much as 900,000 (90% of population).

[2]Consistent with international principles, three durable solutions to displacement are enshrined within the national IDP policy: 1) return to place of origin (i.e., village of origin); 2) settlement at the site of displacement (i.e., settlement in former IDP camp as it is transformed into a viable community); or 3) settlement in another location in the country (i.e., at a transit site). 

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19 November 2008

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