The German government and Intergovernmental Authority on Development (Igad), have launched a €12 million (Shs474 billion) Drought Resilience Initiative for Karamoja sub-region to support various economic activities to uplift the drought stricken region.
The Memorandum of Understanding was signed last week in Kampala by Secretary to the Treasury Keith Muhakanizi, Mr John Kabayo, the coordinator regional body’s drought sustainability initiative, and Dr Ralf Matthias Mohs, the representative of the German ministry of Economic Development.
Mr Muhakanizi, who is also the permanent secretary in the Ministry of Finance, said the funds will support livelihood of the people in the region, in addition to government’s current efforts.
“We look forward to the project because when Karamoja or drought-prone regions have no water, everyone gets disturbed,” he said.
The funds will be managed through the German government’s Drought Resilience Fund but as part of Igad’s drought resilience and sustainability initiative aimed at addressing drought-related emergencies in the region.
Dr Mohs said his country will also support Karamoja in energy sustenance – solar energy and biogas projects – and education and youth projects.
The State minister for Karamoja, Ms Barbara Nekesa, pointed out that the funds will be used to empower communities through provision of goats, heifers, ox-ploughs, and sewing machines to help them start economic activities.
“I would like to say that this partnership with the Federal Republic of Germany and Igad will further improve the life of our people by mitigating aerse effects of droughts that have plagued Karamoja,” she said.
Regional leaders meeting for the Igad summit in Nairobi in 2011 agreed to establish a regional drought resilience and sustainability initiative to tackle drought-related emergencies.