Four districts have been selected to benefit from the Local Climate Adaptive Living Facility (LoCAL) to help them address climate change resilience mechanisms.

The new districts are Bulambuli, Kitgum, Nabulatuk, and Nakapiripirti. Last year Nebbi, Nwoya, and Zombo districts were enrolled in the program.

Under this program, districts will receive more than 16 billion shillings, which they will use to increase local climate change awareness and capacities, integrate climate change adaptation into their planning and budgeting in a participatory and gender-sensitive manner. It will also increase the financing available to local governments for climate change adaptation.

Speaking at the rollout of the program, Ben Kumumanya, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Local Government, said that districts are affected by climate change citing disasters. He added that the districts tend to increase their expenses and constrain their income on development plans.

Kumumanya said that the program aligns well with the government’s objectives of the decentralization program, as it will bring policy and administrative control of services to the point of delivery, which will improve security and the sense of ownership of the programs. 

He cautioned the participating districts to put the funds to good use.

Peter Okidi, the Permanent Secretary for the Ministry of Environment and Water, said that the program will mainstream climate change action plans into the nation’s working plans. He adds that due to the high vulnerability levels, the government is prioritizing  adaptation measures.

“Our number one priority as Uganda is to channel climate funds to adaptation measures because we are very vulnerable. Adaptation to climate change is transforming from awareness to implementation phase and actual interventions on the ground with the local communities,” he said.

According to Okidi, as the government focuses on climate adaptation, local governments are the most instrumental administrative units to the initiative.

The four-year program is implemented by the United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF), with joint funding contributions from the European Union (EU), Belgian cooperation, Sweden, among other development partners.

Caroline Andriensen, the EU Head of Cooperation, said that they expect the local governments to implement climate-resilient infrastructure and social programs.

According to Andriensen, the implementation of the climate change resilience program had in the past been challenged by the lack of adequate funding. 

“We know that the government funding to local governments is not enough to cover all the needs, so we come in to fill that gap. As development partners, we also bridge the knowledge gap as we bring expertise and experiences from other parts of the world to bring solutions that can help communities overcome the effects of climate change,” she explained.


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