The National Programme Coordinator of the Development Initiative for Northern Uganda (DINU), Mr. Pius Okello Ongom, has asked implementing partners to ensure that grant actions are tailored to improve beneficiaries’ lives in Northern Uganda.
DINU is a Government of Uganda programme supported by the European Union (EU) aimed at improving livelihoods in the five sub-regions of Acholi, Karamoja, Lango, Teso and West Nile.
Speaking at a three-day induction workshop for the nine DINU grantees in Entebbe on February 12, Mr. Ongom said implementing partners should ensure that the actions lead to tangible results and impact.
He said the workshop focused on key areas such as finance and contracts, communication and visibility, monitoring and evaluation and coordination/partnerships guidelines.
The government recently signed EUR 27 million or Shs114.5 billion DINU grants contracts with nine organisations to improve livelihoods through increased production of diversified food, enhanced market opportunities and better maternal and child nutrition as well as to improve performance and accountability of local governments through strengthened participation of communities.
The nine grantees that were selected following a competitive process through the DINU Call for Concept Notes which was launched last year are CARITAS Switzerland; International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (ITTA); National Agricultural Research Organisation (NARO), and Lutheran World Federation (LWF). Others include CARE-Denmark, Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung (KAS), Center for Health, Human Rights and Development (CEHURD), ADOL Health Care Initiative and DIAKONIA-Sweden.
“The focus of the grant actions will be to improve livelihoods through increased production of diversified food, enhanced market opportunities and better maternal and child nutrition as well as to improve performance and accountability of local governments through strengthening the participation of communities,” Mr. Ongom said.
Effectively, he added: “The implementation for the grants started on the day the contracts were signed. However, OPM PMU is responsible for supporting implementations of the various actions through organising sessions relating to procedures, policies, and mandates as enshrined in the signed contracts of the grantees. This will ensure adherence to GoU and EU policies and compliance with the provisions of the grant contracts.”
Mr. Francis Okello from the Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development, clarified the role of the ministry as the contracting authority of the DINU grants while OPM is supervising and monitoring the implementation of the grants.
The following are some of the key milestones to be achieved:
- Construction of Logistics Hub in Gulu to facilitate regional and international trade
- Rehabilitation and upgrading of Atiak to Adjumani- Umi ferry landing site (66 KM road) from gravel to bituminous standard. The completion of this road is expected to accelerate trade, tourism within the region and internationally with South Sudan.
- Construct a Mini-Grid plant to supply solar-powered electricity in 25 villages in Lamwo District. This will enable the communities to improve their standard of living and uptake public services for such as health and education.
- Construction of 7 Police Posts in Karamoja to promote peace, the rule of law and development of the region.
The Development Initiative for Northern Uganda (DINU) programme was initiated in 2017. The €150.63 million affirmative action programme of the Government of Uganda and supported by the EU is designed to consolidate stability in Northern Uganda, eradicate poverty and under-nutrition and strengthen the foundations for sustainable and inclusive socio-economic development.
The programme focuses on supporting a territorial approach to development (benefits spreading beyond where the investment is set-up and further complementing other initiatives within the region) through ‘connecting the dots’ in the three key interlinked sectors of; (1) Food Security, Nutrition and Livelihoods. (2) Infrastructures (transport, logistics, water, energy), and (3) Good Governance.
The OPM is responsible for the overall supervision of the DINU programme in partnership with local governments and a wide range of stakeholders which includes implementing partners.