DRDIP Kiryandongo, World Bank Field Mission
THREE high level recommendations came out of the two-day visit that marked the beginning of this year’s World Bank Mission for the Development Response to Displacement Impacts Project (DRDIP) in Uganda. Sub project sites in Kiryandongo district in the Bunyoro Sub region were jointly visited by representatives from the World Bank, Inspectorate of Government(IG), DRDIP project Staff from the Office of the Prime Minister and key district stakeholders.
While addressing a feedback meeting session at Kiryandongo district headquarters Monday 14th, February 2022, the World Bank Technical Team Lead (TTL) Fatima Naqvi advised on the need for DRDIP Uganda to strengthen sustainability efforts for the sub projects that are benefiting the host communities, noting that the additional funding majorly focuses on supporting the refugee communities.
Ms Naqvi further emphasized the need for maximum integration of the different project components. “Let’s ensure as much as possible to create linkages of the different components to maximize benefits and avoid working in silos”, she told a team that also had; the Resident District Commissioner, the District Chairperson five and representatives of the district technical wing headed by the Chief Administrative Officer.
Finally, the TTL urged the IG team to support the project by strengthening the Community Monitoring Groups so as to augment transparency and accountability. She said the structures need to clearly understand all processes involved in DRDIP sub project generation and implementation including mechanisms for managing grievances.
On what she saw while in the field, the TTL described the milestones as “excellent”. At Kiryandongo II Community Efficient Cooking Stove and Briquettes Sub Project for Business, Mary Kevin Akisa, the Group Community Procurement Management Committee Chairperson(CPMC) said, the group members are the first users of their products; energy saving stoves and briquettes. The group have already started producing in bulk for sale within their communities. Proceeds from the sales are used to strengthen the group savings and loan scheme so as to spread wealth within their households. On sustainability, Kevin said, Bunyoro is predominantly a maize growing area, adding that the waste from maize cobs are readily available to be continuously used as raw material.
Asked why the group chose the sub project, Stephen Kabingo, one of the group members said owing to the various Government of Uganda awareness messages on tree conservation to reduce environmental degradation, the group wants to set a precedent. He added that they were trained by the implementing partner and that they are replicating the knowledge gained through community sensitization.
The team also visited Kinyomozi C community tree planting sub project where a group of 61 members have grown eucalyptus on 10 acres of land. The trees enjoyed a 95 percent survival rate and now provides a beautiful forest cover at eight months. Additionally, members also invested in apiary as a supplementary activity to improve on their earnings and strengthen group savings.
At Bweyale Southern Ward Soya Bean Production & Marketing Strategic Investment Fund, the group members reported that the milling machine plant is gaining steady progress. “We were slightly affected by the COVID-19 lockdown, but now with the opening of schools this machine has been giving us monthly net profit of UGX1,200,000”, said Joseph Okony the group CPMC chairperson.
The team also visited Kanyadoli Health Center II where a complete maternity ward with sanitary facilities; latrines water installations were constructed by DRDIP at a cost of Ugsh620,000,000. Pauline Lakot the in-charge told visitors that the structure will promote healthy delivery by mothers from both host and refugee communities.
Another infrastructure investment visited was Kigumba Muslim Primary School where three classroom blocks, a five stance latrine, water harvesting systems were erected at a cost of Ugsh230,000,000. The school head teacher, Moses Kalulu said the new structure has reduced the pupil-classroom ratio from 110 pupils per classroom to now 45 pupils per classroom. Mr. Kalulu expects a spike in academic performance due to improved learning environment, adding that teachers too are motivated to teach in the decent classrooms constructed by the project. Both host and refugee children attend Kiryandongo Muslim Primary School.
Kiryandongo District Chairperson Five, Hon. Edith Aliguma thanked the team for visiting and for the valuable feedback. She noted that the district will work through the marketing department to support the marketing of products; briquettes and energy saving stoves that groups are already producing. Aliguma noted that Kiryandongo hosts not just asylum seekers from other countries but internally displaced persons especially those who relocated from northern Uganda during the LRA insurgency. Meanwhile the RDC, Mr. Mucunguzi Geofrey Ateenyi assured the team of continued team work by Kiryandongo district leaders to ensure successful implementation of all DRDIP sub projects.