The PRDP is a post-conflict recovery plan designed to eradicate poverty in Northern Uganda after more than 20 years of conflict and population displacement. It started in 2007 and should be implemented in 2010. In this analysis James Omara gives four reasons why PRDP is doomed to fail.
Outline of the programme
The PRDP has been prepared on the basis of lessons that have been learnt from implementation of a plethora of programmes in the North by various actors. In light of these lessons the PRDP has been launched to address a number of key issues:
Support to ongoing political dialogue and existing commitments;
Conflict, growth and prosperity: an extraordinary effort to reverse decline in welfare and growth by achieving peace and stability;
Organizing framework: adapted to the conflict contexts in the North which will ensure better coordination, supervision and monitoring of ongoing interventions;
Political, Security and Development Links: by adopting a conflict framework it is
Expected that socio-economic investments will be better linked to changes in security approaches;
Mobilizing of resources to address development gaps: analysis of current international and national interventions suggests that there are gaps in responses to the conflict.
The PRDP strategy is to address the unique challenges in each of the sub-regions based on the conflict status and the extent of vulnerability. This map show the three regions:
The PRDP sets three year targets in line with the different contexts set out above. The PRDP programme implementation and outcomes will be evaluated at the end of three years and decisions made on the longer term development in the North.
PRDP priority interventions and expected outcomes
The overall goal of the PRDP is to consolidate peace and security and lay foundation for recovery and development. This is to be achieved through four core strategic objectives that are mutually reinforcing:
1: Consolidation of state authority
The ultimate outcome is to ensure cessation of armed hostilities, providing security, reestablishing the rule of law, enabling the judicial and legal services to become functional, protection of human rights and strengthening local governance through rebuilding state institutions in the region.
2. Rebuilding and empowering communities
The PRDP seeks to contribute to community recovery and promote an improvement in the conditions and quality of life of displaced persons in camps, completing the return and reintegration of displaced populations, initiating rehabilitation and development activities among other resident communities and ensuring that the vulnerable are protected and served.
3: Revitalization of the economy
The PRDP seeks to re-activate the productive sectors within the region, with particular focus on production and marketing, services and industry. This will require major rehabilitation of critical infrastructure. Revitalization of the economy has both positive and negative influences on the environment, therefore mechanisms for sound management of environment and Natural resources will have to be reinforced.
4: Peace building and reconciliation
A major outcome of the PRDP is to ensure the continuous prevalence of peace in the region.
The peace building and reconciliation process requires increased access to information by the population, enhancing counseling services, establishment of mechanisms for intra/inter communal and national conflict resolution, strengthening local governance and informal leadership structures and reinforcing the socioeconomic reintegration of ex-combatants.
PRDP priority programmes
The above strategic objectives will be achieved through 14 priority programmes that have been agreed upon by the districts as the most critical for stabilizing the North:
Facilitation of Peace Agreement Initiatives; Police enhancement; Prisons enhancement; Rationalization of auxiliary forces; Judicial services enhancement; Enhancing local government; Emergency assistance; Return and resettlement of IDPs; Community
Empowerment and recovery; Production and marketing; Infrastructure rehabilitation; Environment and natural resource management; Public Information, Education and Communication (IEC), sensitization, and, Counseling, Amnesty, demobilization and reintegration.
Cost of PRDP
The estimated cost of the PRDP representing investments over a three year period is Ug Shilling 1,091,734,734,169 or $ 606,519,297 US Dollars.Thisrepresents some $ 58 per person Dollars. This represents some $ 58 per person over the three years. As a comparison in South Sudan, the estimated official development assistance needs was some $ 65 per capita, as set out in the Sudan Joint Assessment Mission report. In the case of the PRDP, a total of Ug Shs. 337,476,023,360 or 31% will be required in the first year; Ug Shs. 327,520,420,251 or 30% will be required in the second year; and Ug Shs. 426,738,290,558 or 39% will be required in the third year.PRDP is set for 1st July 2008 after the government approves the budget of the new financial year 2008|2009.
FOUR REASONS WHY PRDP WILL FAIL IN NORTHERN UGANDA
PRDP has got five key reasons why it will fail to bear fruits on the mass population of people of the northern region of the country
Usually, 39% of the national budget goes to corrupt officials who are implementers of the government programmes.
This will be one of the major obstacles in the implementation of the peace recovery and development plan. In the same way northern Uganda social action plan suffered in the hands of corrupt districts executives who are the same people who will handle the implementation of the PRDP,so what hope should we have in PRDP when NUSAF money have been swindled by the same people?
Recently there have been open demonstrations by the locals in Lira town to show their dismay on the district chairperson who are being investigated by security operatives over the misuse of NUSAF funds.
PRDP will again pass through those suspected corrupt district official, can the government convince the people of the north that this time around the history will not repeat it’s self in PRDP if not what hope should the people of northern Uganda put in PRDP?
Recently president Museveni came out with a programme to give iron sheet to the returnees but at the end the iron sheet was given to the movement carders but not the real returnees now the question is what will happen to PRDP?.
PRDP will be implemented through three years rolling development plan for the districts and through different sectors e.g. construction of roads and bridges will pass through ministry of works and transport central government in conjunction with the local government of those particular districts, water, health, etc will fall in their different sectors respectively
In other words the implementation process will pass through so many hands that may easily end up misappropriated and by the time it’s reaching the beneficiaries, it is a left over.
Imagine the NUSAF that was designed that the money comes from the world bank straight to the sub group’s account was even swindled and now how about PRDP that will pass in their hands directly.
3. Lack of awareness of the programme to the beneficiaries
Most of the people in the PRDP districts are very ignorant about this government programe and how it will operates and by who and for who even when and how much.
Government has failed completely to sensitize the community on how PRDP will work and the channel which the community can benefit from the programme.
The implementation of PRDP was meant to kick off on the 1st July 2008 but up to now there is northing which can be pointed out as a result of PRDP implementation in the area.
Now the community of Northern Uganda has been questioning themselves weather PRDP exist or is a ghost programme to please the donors that the government is committed in resettling the displaced people of Northern region because there is nothing which can be seen.
4. The delay in Juba peace talks between the government and the LRA
Most of the people are still not aware on what will happen in the Juba peace talks. And the people in the North are still not going back home fully, because they still want one question to be answered: Will the Juba peace talks lead to lasting peace in the region?
Read more about PRDP: http://www.refugeelawproject.org/resources/papers/others/PRDP.pdf