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Lamwo NGOs Asked to Share Work Plans with District Authorities

John Komakech Ogwok, the district LC 5 Chairperson reveals that there are several humanitarian agencies who have decided to conceal their budgets, activity plans and are not open to have their operations monitored.
16 Apr 2019 13:45
RDC James Nabinson Kidega addressing representatives of humanitarian agencies during coordination meeting at Lamwo district council hall. In White shirt is District LC 5 Chairperson John Komakech Ogwok
Lamwo district authorities have threatened to expel Non-Governmental Organizations-NGOs dealing in humanitarian work for flouting compliance and operating procedures in the district.

Since 2017, Lamwo has been home to over 40 humanitarian agencies administering relief services to displaced South Sudan refugees who fled armed violence and hunger back home.

John Komakech Ogwok, the LC 5 Chairperson notes that there are several humanitarian agencies which intentionally conceal their budgets, activity plans and are not open to have their operations monitored.

Ogwok explained that it’s mandatory for every partner to sign a memorandum of understanding - MoU with the district before being allowed to carry out humanitarian interventions. He added that those that can’t comply will be expelled from the district.

According to Ogwok, some development partners are setting their own rules of operation without involving and seeking the guidance of the district. He further argued that he has been barred access to areas of operation of some NGOs. 

Julius Kamuza, the Palabek Refugee Settlement Camp Commandant under OPM the oversees all agencies operating in Lamwo could not deny nor admit the anomalies. Kamuza however, apologized to the Chairman for the mishap.

A joint coordination meeting between the district leaders, Office of the Prime Minister – OPM and representatives of the humanitarian agencies held at Lamwo district headquarters last week discovered that only 11 partners had been certified to operate.

Some of the NGOs that have signed MoU with the district include; Caritas, Oxfam, African Women and Youth Action for Development (AWYAD), IRC, Food for the Hungry, LWF, AVSI, CESVI and Lutheran World Relief.

The Lamwo Resident District Commissioner – RDC James Nabinson Kidega says that in line with Uganda’s policy framework on refugee assistance, at least 70% beneficiaries of humanitarian response are refugees while 30% are from the refugee-hosting communities.

Kidega notes that when the development partners do not make known to the district their areas of intervention, it becomes difficult to monitor their contributions to the community where they operate.

OPM with United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees-UNHCR in partnership with other humanitarian agencies are operating new refugee reception centres at refugees fleeing civil strife in South Sudan. The centres include Ngomomoro and Apiritii in Lokung and Madi-Opei sub-counties.