Deputy RDC Warns Illegal NGOs Operating in Rubanda, Vows Strict Action

RUBANDA – The Deputy Resident Commissioner of Rubanda District, Eric Ssewandigi, has issued a stern warning to non-governmental organizations (NGOs) operating without proper registration in the district.

During the launch of the groundbreaking Participatory Action Research initiative in Rubanda Town Council, Ssewandigi addressed the concerning issue head-on.

Flanked by community leaders, change agents, and representatives from the Literacy Action and Development Agency (LADA) and Twaweza Uganda, Ssewandigi emphasized the need for all NGOs to comply with the law.

“It is regrettable to discover that certain organizations are conducting operations in the district illegally. Measures will be taken to address this issue, and we will not hesitate to punish those found to be operating without proper registration” he said.

 The Deputy RDC’s warning comes as a response to reports of unregistered NGOs engaging in various activities within Rubanda District. Such illegal operations have raised concerns about accountability, transparency, and the legitimacy of the organization’s activities. 

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The launch event, held at Volcano Hotel in Rubanda Town Council, also marked the introduction of the Participatory Action Research initiative, aimed at empowering citizens to actively participate in the development of their areas.

The initiative, a collaborative effort between LADA and Twaweza Uganda, aligns with the provisions of the 1995 Uganda Constitution, which emphasizes citizens’ participatory rights as enshrined in Article 37, Article 39, and Article 41(1).

Community members and change agents expressed enthusiasm for the project, acknowledging the importance of finding local solutions to their challenges and reducing reliance on external support.

“When we call for meetings to come up with solutions to people’s problems, all they ask us is if we have facilitation for them. But with this new initiative, we can work together to solve our own issues,” Jasper Saturday, one of the change agents, shared.

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David Mugurusi, the senior Program officer for Twaweza, highlighted the initiative’s overarching objective, which is to foster unity between authorities, leaders, and citizens within their communities.

“This project will enable communities to take charge of their own development and reduce their reliance on external aid. It’s about empowering them with the tools to create sustainable change,” He stated.

Arthur Mbabazi, Executive Director of LADA, shed light on the extensive scope of the project, spanning five districts in Uganda, including Rubanda, Kamuli, Kole, Kyenjojo, and Namutumba. 

“The initiative focuses on enhancing citizens’ right to access information within these communities and actively engaging duty bearers to address pressing issues such as road conditions, medical supply shortages in health centres, and inadequate access to clean water, among other challenges,” he asserted.

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According to research findings presented during the launch, Rubanda District faces a crisis with deteriorating roads, plagued by potholes and drainage issues, with over 50% of residents expressing dissatisfaction and 38% reporting worsening road infrastructure.

Frequent landslides further exacerbate the situation, leaving communities isolated and cut off from vital resources and markets.

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