Response to COVID-19
Uganda has issued a number of measures to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 and secondary damage since March 2020. These include, amongst others, banning of public gatherings, meetings, and activities; curfews; confinements; closure of schools. However, it is very challenging for the majority of Ugandans to comply to the lockdown rules and to practice social distancing since most have to go to work and buy food on a daily basis, as well as due to the overcrowded housing situations. The measures are expected to negatively affect food security and physical and mental well-being.
In Uganda, external and domestic resources were rapidly mobilized to finance the response. For instance, the Executive Board of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) approved the disbursement of around US$491.5 million for Uganda under the Rapid Credit Facility (RCF) in May. Yet, which the Ministry of Health requested to be allocated a funding in the amount of UGX 464 billion, it was only allocated UGX 104 billion. This investment is focused on strengthening care instead of testing and tracing through the primary health care (PHC) system.
There are some concerns about the mismanagement of COVID-19 resources, given the prevalence of corruption in Uganda. In April, four top Ugandan government officials were arrested following reports they inflated COVID-19 relief food prices, causing governments’ losses of $528000.
- Published a press release calling for government to increase transparency and accountability in the procurement of essential commodities during the fight against COVID- 19. AdvocacyAwareness raising
- Articles and opinions written by TI-Uganda (also working in the project Open Contracting for Health) on prevailing corruption issues as a result of COVID-19 published in newspapers. Awareness raisingMedia campaign
- Conducted an online dialogue on “Status of transparency and accountability on emergency response to COVID-19”Awareness raising
- Participated in radio and TV talk shows and interviews on “Issues of transparency and accountability amidst COVID 19.”Awareness raisingMedia campaign
- Managing the TI-Uganda toll free anti-corruption hotline. These calls included complaints on the government response to COVID 19.System development