By Isaiah Kitimbo –  

The Government has signed grant contracts amounting to EUR 27 million or Shs114.5 billion with nine organisations to implement development projects in Northern Uganda under the Development Initiative for Northern Uganda (DINU).

DINU is a Government of Uganda programme supported by the European Union aimed at improving livelihoods in the five sub-regions of Acholi, Karamoja, Lango, Teso and West Nile.

The PS (OPM) Mrs. Christine Guwatudde Kintu (Right), and Mr Pius Okello Ongom (2nd Right), the National Programme Coordinator of the Development Initiative for Northern Uganda, guide Mr Jesse Kamstra (Left), the country representative of LWF, and Mr Apollo Gabazira, the CARE country director, to sign grants contracts at the OPM in Kampala on January 14, 2020.

The nine grantees: CARITAS Switzerland; International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (ITTA); National Agricultural Research Organisation (NARO), Lutheran World Federation (LWF), and CARE-Denmark were selected following a competitive process through the DINU Call for Concept Notes that was launched last year.

Others are Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung (KAS), Center for Health, Human Rights and Development (CEHURD), ADOL Health Care Initiative and DIAKONIA-Sweden.

They will implement grants in 37 districts of the five sub-regions of Acholi, Karamoja, Lango, Teso and West Nile. The focus of their 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 strengthened participation of communities.

The nine grantees signed the contracts today at the Office of the Prime Minister during a meeting chaired by Mrs. Christine Guwatudde Kintu, the OPM Permanent Secretary. 

At the occasion of this event, Mr. Keith Muhakanizi, the Permanent Secretary/Secretary to the Treasury, Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development (MoFPED) said: “As Contracting Authority of the DINU Call grantees, the NAO/MoFPED is pleased to award the nine contracts under which the Government shall work closely with different national and international partners in support of the DINU programme implementation and in the development of Northern Uganda.”

Officials from the Office of the Prime Minister, European Union Delegation in Uganda, and Ministry of Finance, join the nine grantees in a group photo shortly after signing DINU grants contracts to implement development projects in Northern Uganda at OPM on Tuesday, January 14, 2020.

Mrs. Christine Guwatudde Kintu, the Permanent Secretary, Office of the Prime Minister (OPM), said: “DINU is a continuation of the affirmative action in the recovery of Northern Uganda. We expect the implementation of the various activities in the grant actions to be of very high standards and that each grantee will synergize with other interventions and partners in the region, in particular, coordinate closely with the district local governments. Of very key interest to OPM is that you should strengthen your implementation approaches and deliverables and avoid any waste of resources on activities that would not translate into changes in the lives of the target community and beneficiaries.”

Ms Imelda Kashaija (Left), the Deputy Director general of the National Agricultural Research Organisation (NARO), receives the DINU grants contract from Ms Christine Guwatudde Kintu, the Permanent Secretary at OPM, shortly after the signing ceremony at OPM on January 14, 2020.

Mr. Cedric Merel, the Head of Cooperation at the European Union Delegation to Uganda, said: “With the signing of these 9 grants, DINU enters in its full implementation phase.  The EU will stand together with the Government to ensure that this flagship programme brings the expected benefits to the populations in the targeted districts. With the leadership of the Government, both at national and district level, the close involvement of the beneficiary communities and the commitment of the implementing partners, we expect this project to be a game changer in Northern Uganda.”

The DINU grants are contracted by the National Authorising Officer (NAO) – Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development (MoFPED) and endorsed by the European Union Delegation in Kampala with the Office of the Prime Minister (OPM) as the supervising authority of the grantees.

The grantees shall start the implementation of the agreed actions in close cooperation with the district local governments and partners in Northern Uganda, effective from January 2020.

DINU background 

The Development Initiative for Northern Uganda (DINU) programme, which was initiated in 2017 is funded with a 132.8 million Euros grant from the European Union, 11.9 million Euros from the Government of Uganda and 5.9 million Euros from implementing partners.

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 other implementing partners – GIZ, DFID/TradeMark East Africa, UNCDF, UNICEF, UNRA and OPM.