Despite Uganda's steady economic growth, the trickle-down effect has been slow in reaching the majority of the population. This has created hefty income disparity which has translated to overall unjust development. Almost three quarters of Ugandans continue to live in multidimensional poverty with limited access to basic quality social protection services especially in education and health sectors. This unequal distribution of income and opportunities is a major national obstacle to attaining sustainable, inclusive and a socially just development.
Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung’s (FES) work in Uganda rotates around empowerment of social justice by creating research based evidence, offering alternative models to the dominant discourse and enabling the participation of marginalised groups build a more responsive and socially just development path. FES does this work civil society organisations and government departments at national and regional level.
In 2015/16, a research on the Potential of Oil and Gas Revenues for Inclusive Development was commissioned by FES in the three East African Countries of Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda. This was followed by a series of dialogues aimed at promoting debates on exploring alternative economic concepts – Inclusive Development – beyond the sole growth centric model; by discussing the responsibility of the state to set the framework for a more inclusive development agenda and a socially fair redistribution of oil and gas revenues.
As Uganda journeys towards economic transformation, and into a middle income nation by 2020, FES plans to further oil and gas revenue discussions to include economic potentials and benefits of extractive industries transparency initiatives (EITI); oil and gas revenue sharing; creating awareness on access to information needs in the oil and gas sector; propel discussions on market driven development model within the framework of a social democratic discourse - and mainstream the effects of economic transformation upon the environment.
In our work discourse, FES emphasizes the crucial role of an active state in socio-economic development and encourages privileged social and economic actors to take stronger responsibility for the society as a whole.