Wednesday, November 28, 2018

NMG holds first NGO executives convention

NMG holds first NGO executives convention

 Accessed on Thursday 29th November, 2018 from:
 Thursday November 29 2018
Kampala. The Nation Media Group (NMG) has held its first ever NGO Executive Directors convention in Kampala.
Mr Tony Glencross, the Managing Director of NMG Uganda, the parent company of Daily Monitor, The East African, NTV Uganda, Kfm and Dembe Fm, said the convention was to help NGO executives to engage, strategise and reflect on their work.
“With dwindling resources and changing global dynamics, there is need for increased diversification, engagement and partnership among all sectors,” Mr Glencross said at the convention on Tuesday.
He said NGOs need to communicate to the beneficiaries and share experiences, adding that NMG has all the necessary platforms to facilitate this cause.
“NMG sees this opportunity to work with the NGO sector as an integral part of the community, sharing knowledge and ideas, driving agendas to the powers that be and creating awareness of the concerns and goals of the NGO community,” Mr Gencross said.
The convention ran under the theme ‘Opening New Frontiers for Partnerships and Resources’.
Dwindling aid
Ms Elizabeth Ongom, an official from the European Union, said aid has globally shrunk and civil society organisations should at all times guard their reputation if they are to continue getting the limited resources.
“Development partners speak to each other and in detail,” Ms Ongom cautioned.
“International NGOs are facing the same challenge as local NGOs. So, seeking and beginning this conversation [opening new frontiers for partnerships and resources] is really pertinent at this time,” she added.
Dr Wolff-Michael Mors, the head of civil society and governance programme at GIZ, a Germany development agency, said the civil society needs a conducive environment “to unfold its positive impact to the development of a country”. “The freedom of association is a freedom right, hence regulation needs to limit itself to the absolute necessary in a democratic society,” Dr Mors said.
He, however, asked civil society organisations to develop competences to analyse their area of interests, government policies and cultivate strong networks to bundle competencies.
Credibility call
“Ability to participate in policy processes needs credibility. Standards for state actors or the private sector need to apply strictly to their performance; accountability, transparency and human rights-based approach,” Dr Mors added.
Mr Jackson Bitarabeho, the executive director of Child Aids Fund, applauded the initiative to bring NGOs together, and prayed for permanent partnership with NMG.
“Whenever we meet [NGOs], we are busy looking for resources and never get time to discuss pertinent issues as we are discussing today,” Mr Bitarabeho said.
Uganda has at least 15,000 registered NGOs. Mr Joseph Mugisha, the social protection and advocacy officer at the Uganda National NGO Forum, appealed to NGOs to provide services that motivate people to seek more.
“Community members are generally the beneficiaries of your service, so if members shun your service, then you are irrelevant. You need to develop the capacity of members to demand a service,” Mr Mugisha said.

  Accessed on Thursday 29th November, 2018 from:

Monday, September 17, 2018

Why are institutions failing to end violence against children?

By Esther Oluka
The cases of violence against children are always distressing. Often, you will hear stories that a child has been beaten, burnt, raped or even killed. It is such a sad trend.
This is undoubtedly why different institutions continuously involve themselves in eradicating violence against children.

One of such establishments is the Ministry of Education and Sports which came up with the national strategic plan on violence against children in schools for the years 2015 to 2020.
Part of the plan includes promoting community and district level dialogues around the abandonment of harmful practices such as child marriages, educating the public on children’s rights, equipping schools with facilities and resources to support the prevention of violence against children, among others.
Also, institutions such as police (which even has a child and family protection unit dedicated towards fighting the vice), local communities, non-governmental organisations (NGOs), and churches have also been champions in the fight against the vice.
Despite the efforts these institutions put towards fighting violence against children, one wonders why the cases are still rampant.
Why the high numbers of violence against children?
Fred Onduri-Machulu, a member of the national team on violence against children under the ministry of education, says there are a number of reasons why the vice is still rampant in the country.
“There is limitation of resources including funds to help monitor the manifestation of the vice all over the country. A good example is the probation officers in districts who are poorly facilitated to observe issues related to children,” Machulu says.
Also, Machulu says the private sector, including NGOs, do not like working with government.
“It’s like the two establishments are always suspicious of each other. In the end, government is unJimmy Odyekable to know what is happening on ground and do the necessary intervention,” he says.
Furthermore, the enforcement process of polices and laws regarding children is weak.
“It’s like people are not bothered about these regulations, and, that’s why rather than protect children, they are instead violating their rights,” he says.
As a way of tackling some of these challenges, Machulu says there is a need for collaborative action between government and society organisations.
Police speaks out
Although the Uganda Police Force has a department, the child and family protection unit, dedicated towards handling cases of violence against children including abuse and rape, the department continues to face several challenges while handling these child related issues.
“For example, there are parents who prefer to settle cases outside court with the perpetrators of the crime. Some of these culprits offer these parents money as a tactful way of killing the case.
In the end, the child will not receive justice,” says the Senior Superintendent of Police, Maureen Atuhaire, the in-charge, child and family protection unit at Uganda Police.
The other major challenge Atuhaire points out includes lack of a witness protection centre in the country, one that would be ideal for protecting threatened witnesses.
“The absence of these centres leaves individuals with no option but go back to their respective homes or communities where the vice happened.” Atuhaire says.
There is also the issue of parents refusing to record statements at police after their child has been abused.
In order to curb some of these issues, Atuhaire says there is need to continue sensitising masses on the rights of children, but also, it is important that different stakeholders including parents, teachers and police take account of their respective roles geared towards curbing the vice.
Violence against disabled children
According to Dolerence Were, the executive director of Uganda Society for Disabled Children (USDC), children with disabilities are more vulnerable towards facing violence than those without any kind of disability.
“They are easily violated because of their limited ability to help themselves from perpetrators, Infact, some of these children are entirely at the mercy of caretakers who take advantage of them,” Were says.
A 2014 BMC Public Health article titled, ‘Violence against primary school children with disabilities in Uganda: a cross-sectional study’, states globally, 150 million children aged 0 to 18 years old are estimated to be living with a disability, the majority of whom live in low and middle-income countries.
Most at risk
Disabled children attending school are at an increased risk of most forms of violence relative to their non-disabled peers with girls being more at risk, notably sexual violence.
Part of the article also hinted that although The Convention on the Rights of the Child, and the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities directs governments to ensure all children, irrespective of any disability, enjoy their rights without discrimination, a growing evidence indicates that disabled children are often amongst the most socially excluded and vulnerable.
On what measures can be put in place to help children with disabilities, Were suggests that rather give on them, parents and other caretakers should help their children for example by ensuring they get the right medical attention and assessment.

Accessed on Monday 17th September 2018 from:  

Friday, August 3, 2018


Prevention of violence against children is a new world phenomenon that has come to the development agenda. Prevention of violence against children was first fused within child protection work and little did development work realise that a lot was being missed when prevention of VAC was done along side child protection. Rwenzori Consortium for Civic Competence together with Children's Rights Violence Prevention Fund ( CRVP-Fund) in November 2015 piloted a project on VAC prevention in Kasese District. The project has since scaled up and identified key stakeholders in prevention of VAC. As noted from our experiences, community driven approaches to prevent VAC is has proved effective since communities are well known for their resilience and child up bringing in times of loss of parents or guardians. In this community driven approaches, we have identified the parents as key stakeholders, thus RWECO has trained a team of 16 (8f,8m) community facilitators who will facilitate Parenting for Respectability sessions in 8 sub counties of Kasese, we have also trained 32 ( 16f,16m)primary school teachers in safe school environment promotion using journeys, a hand book developed by RTI for the ministry of Education.

In addition, religious leaders are key stakeholders since they own most of the schools that we call government aided, thus 120 religious leaders were sensitized in prevention of VAC. A case by case approach was adopted given the different religious beliefs and norms about children.

To crown it all, we realised, culture plays a critical role in child rearing practices right from conception to adult hood. RWECO identified Nyabaghole Foundation for Development which runs a unique program for the young children in Kasese popularly known as " Embaale Ya'Nyabaghole" Youth camp where the youth are trained in skills, taught Bakonzo culture, norms and practices. The Embaale Ya'Nyabaghole was initiated and mentored by the Obusinga Queen who in January 2016 launched the program of making reusable sanitary pads with the young girls. RWECO together with Nyabahgole Foundation, has sensitized a team of 16 clan leaders and 35 native chiefs of Obusinga bwa Rwenzururu using the Ministry of Gender Labour and Development Final report recommendations ( Ref. GOU: Cultural norms, values and practices that impact on Hiv & Aids, maternal health and Gender based violence. Final Report, Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development, November 2013). The main facilitator was Hon. Loice Biira Bwambale, former Kasese District Woman Member of Parliament ( 1989-2005)

Hon. Loice Biira Bwambale, facilitating at the sensitisation meeting with OBR clan leaders and native chiefs at Virina Garden Hotel, Kasese Municipality, 17th July, 2018

Participants at the sensitization meeting of clan leaders and native chiefs
Action points for the clan leaders and native chiefs

The meeting realised that the Bakonzo had a rich culture of child naming according to order of birth which was unique in the world, the participants resolved to make a committee of five people who will study further and write to Ministry of Gender for advice on how to submit their unique culture to UNESCO

The participants also resolved to sensitize the communities against the culture of early marriages and teenage pregnancies and instead promote positive culture that keeps children in school with focus on the girl child

To make a follow up meeting with the Resident District Commissioner on how to seek for government support to sensitize the communities on Bakonzo positive cultural practices  aimed at preventing violence against children

Compiled by

Evelyne Kenyana
Felestus Masika
Edited by Jimmy B. Odyek

Monday, July 16, 2018


Violence against children continues to be  a major problem in Uganda and Kasese in particular, it  happens in  homes , communities and at school where children are faced with corporal punishment,sexual violence ,bullying  among other  cases . RWECO and its member organizations of; RIDE-Africa, KALI, GOOD HOPE and RIC-NET in partnership with Kasese guide radio with  funding from the  Child Rights and Violence Prevention  Fund (CRVP-F) have been implementing a project titled  "community driven approaches to prevent violence against children and adolescents in Kasese district " .As one of the ways of preventing violence against children at school, Rwenzori Consortium for Civic Competence (RWECO) conducted a 3 days training for teachers on safe school environment at Rwenzori International hotel, Kasese.
RWECO coordinator during the training

RWECO conducted the 3 days training(11th-13th July) to equip teachers with knowledge about safe school environment so that they can be able  to champion the safe school element in their schools.42 participants (m-22, f-20) who included 2 teachers from the each of 16 schools of implementation and RWECO staff attended the training.
The teachers trained were from 15 primary schools: Kanyatsi, Kyabikere, Karambi, Kamasasa, Mundongo, St. John’s Bukangara, Katwe, Katwe Quran, Karusandara SDA, Kenyange Muslim, Nkaiga, Kyanya SDA, Ibuga, Kitswamba SDA and one secondary school: Kisinga Voc. Secondary School.
The trained teachers are expected to be examples in their schools and communities in creating a safe school environment. They are also expected to sensitize fellow teachers, parents and school management committees about creating a safe school environment.
The key facilitator Mr. Kutamba Caleb took teachers through different sessions that zeroed at creating a safe school environment for learners with reference to a manual called the Journeys developed by ministry of education and sports (MoES). Key topics of discussion included safe spaces for children while at school, qualities of a senior man and a senior woman teacher, qualities of a safe school environment, reflection on one’s life at school, images of violence among other sessions .
The facilitator during one of the sessions
All these made teachers reflect on their actions that perpetrate violence against children and promised to refrain from them so as to be good and exemplary teachers. The teachers through Ms. Muhahiria Jackline a teacher at Kisinga voc. secondary presented their commitment to RWECO and said that “we teachers have repented of the different cases of VAC we perpetuate against children” and  pledged to create a safe school environment in the schools where they teach.  She thanked RWECO for having facilitated such kind of training.

Ms.Muharia Jackline presenting the teachers commitments
The training was closed by the LC5chairperson Kasese Hon. Geoffrey Bighogho Sibendire, who urged the trained teachers to desist from the different forms of VAC they have been perpetuating against children since they have been trained .He said that “children will always remember the bad things done to them and forget the good ones so teachers should avoid Violence against children so that they are not held in the bad memories of their learners. He commissioned the participants as champion teachers in ending VAC
The LCV at the closure of the training
In conclusion, the 3 days training ended successfully as teachers pledged to create a safe school environment in their schools and one of the participants composed a song discouraging VAC and that the nation is because teachers are and since they are the nation is .The song was composed by Mr. Bwambale Selevest a teacher at Kanyatsi primary school in Kitholhu sub county.

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Government to ban sachet alcohol next year

Government to ban sachet alcohol next year 

 ( Accessed  on 21st June, 2018 from:

By Eronie Kamukama
Kampala- Trade minister Amelia Kyambadde yesterday said government will next year ban sachet alcohol given their health hazard to the community.
Speaking during the launch of the Uganda Breweries Limited (UBL) new glass packaging line at in Kampala, Kyambadde said: “For waragi (alcohol) in the kaveera (sachet), we shall start with the one less than 200ml. Those factories producing them are already in the process of bringing in equipment that will package their alcohol. It is a gradual process that will start in September and the total ban will be in March 2019.”
The Ministry of Trade in consultations with stakeholders has prepared the Principles of Alcoholic Drinks Control Bill which is due for presentation to the Cabinet.
The Bill will be key in the total ban of sachet alcohol and regulation in the industry.
Mr Mark Ocitti, the UBL managing director, welcomed the ban, saying it will create a clean trading environment.
Sixty eight per cent of alcohol consumed in Uganda, according to Mr Ocitti, is illicit with much of it packaged and consumed in sachets.
Illicit alcohol includes counterfeits and one that is produced without stringent controls.
Ms Kyambadde said preparations had been made to establish a bottling factory under Uganda Development Cooperation.
“We have already made arrangements with the investors. In Masaka, we have the best sand for bottles so in future you might be sourcing bottles from here instead of ordering from Kenya or elsewhere,” she said.
Ms Kyambadde also admitted that there were a number of illicit alcohol manufacturers that are unknown.
Irresponsible drinking
According to Mr John O’keefe, the Diageo Africa president, illicit alcohol does not only hurt licensed distillers but causes government to lose revenue as well as promote irresponsible drinking.
“Approximately 61 per cent of alcohol in Uganda is unbranded and does not pay any tax. It is estimated that the total fiscal loss from this is Shs628b. In addition, an estimated 98 per cent of all alcohol abuse stems from this unbranded, unregulated illicit alcohol,” he said.
The alcohol industry, according to the Ministry of Trade, ranks among the top tax payers, having contributed about Shs235b in form of Excise Duty in the 2015/16 financial year. It also directly employs 60,000 people along the entire value chain. 

Accessed on Thursday 21st June, 2018 from: 

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Poverty causing Rwenzori conflicts - Museveni

Friday January 12 2018

Poverty causing Rwenzori conflicts - Museveni

Relations.  President Museveni interacts with
Relations. President Museveni interacts with Ms Christine Muhindo, the mother of Rwenzururu King Charles Mumbere, during a fundraising in Kasese on January 11, 2018. Left is Bukedea MP Anita Among. PHOTO BY ENID NINSIIMA 
By Enid Ninsiima & Moris Mumbere
Kasese. President Museveni has vowed to fight poverty and employment in Rwenzori, which he said are the major causes of insecurity in the sub-region.
“We are going to concentrate on Kilembe mines rehabilitation so that jobs are created since there are many minerals in the area,” the President said yesterday at a donors’ conference of Kasese Better Living Centre of the Seventh Day Adventist Church.
Mr Museveni told the people of Kasese that money has remained in modern agriculture, tourism services, ICT and industrialisation and urged them to make use of ICT to create job opportunities.
“Use internet processing to outsource jobs abroad,” the President said
He pledged six vehicles for SDA bishops in the country and pledged Shs200 million towards the completion of the church in Kasese. He paid Shs30m cash.
The President warned the Obusinga bwa Rwenzururu to desist from being disoriented from their core values, which he said disturbs peace in the sub-region.
“I am ready to talk with you about peace building in Kasese since we cannot depend on peace brought about by army,” he said.
This is the first visit the President has made to the sub-region since the 2016 Kasese palace attack where more than 100 royal guards were killed.

 Accessed on Friday 12th January, 2018 from: