IGAD through its Drought Disaster Resilience and Sustainability Initiative (IDDRSI) is hosting a cross-border dialogue for Karamoja Cluster from 24-25 July 2018 in Moroto, Uganda. The first of its kind, the dialogue brings together local administrative officials, community leaders as well as representatives of women and youth actively working on peace and development issues across borders – from Kenya, South Sudan and Uganda.
IGAD experts in areas of resilience, Pastoral areas and livestock development as well as peace and security were also present.
The dialogue is being held within the context of IDDRSI’s mandate of promoting sustainable development and resilience of communities in the borderlands of the IGAD region as well as efforts by IGAD Member States to promote peace, security and development of the Karamoja Cluster.
The dialogue’s main aim is to create a sustainable forum whereby communities in the Karamoja Cluster can express concerns, inform priority areas of intervention as well as regularly engage with their neighbouring communities across the border.
The Karamoja Cluster encompasses cross-border areas of four IGAD Member States namely: Ethiopia, Kenya, South Sudan and Uganda. Areas in the cluster share a history of socio-economic and political marginalization and under-development primarily due to their remote location – in relation to national capitals – and inaccessibility. Furthermore, the livelihood of pastoral and agro-pastoral communities that make up the majority of the cluster’s population is affected by multiple challenges including resource shortages, recurrent natural disasters (such as drought) and insecurity.
On the other hand, the Karamaoja Cluster holds a lot of promise for the region’s development particularly in light of recent natural resource discoveries, and intensified national and regional infrastructure projects that are set to transform the face of the cluster.
The dialogue will conclude with a meeting of ministers in-charge of Resilience on 26 July 2018 that will consider the proposals of the cross-border dialogue towards a robust regional approach in addressing peace and development concerns of the Karamoja Cluster. The ministers will also inaugurate a cross-border development facilitation unit in Moroto, Uganda. ###