EU Commitment to Ugandan Refugee Crisis Rises to €210 million

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In short
The pledge was delivered by Christos Stylianides, the EU Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management at the on-going Solidarity Summit on Refugees in Munyonyo. It seeks to boost efforts by the Ugandan government to deal with the refugee crisis triggered by insecurity in South Sudan.

The European Union has pledged an additional 85 million euro (336 billion Shillings) to the refugee response in Uganda, a contribution which drives the EU support to almost 210 million euro (831 billion Shillings) .

The pledge was delivered by Christos Stylianides, the EU Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management at the on-going Solidarity Summit on Refugees in Munyonyo. It seeks to boost efforts by the Ugandan government to deal with the refugee crisis triggered by insecurity in South Sudan.

The overall refugee population in Uganda has more than doubled from 500,000 to more than 1.25 million over the last one year making Uganda the host to the world's fastest growing refugee emergency.

Refugees in Uganda include 950,000 refugees from South Sudan, 216,612 refugees from the Democratic Republic of Congo, 3, 294 refugees from Sudan (Khartoum),  36,278 refugees from Burundi, 35,941 refugees from Somali, 14,899 refugees from Rwanda, 12,654 refugees from Eritrea and 3,080 refugees from Ethiopia.

"I stand here before you today, in humble admiration. You have received refugees like friends and neighbors from 13 countries in the region. We are here today to reaffirm our solidarity with a nation that keeps its doors open for those seeking sanctuary from violence, hatred and hunger," Stylianides stated.

He applauded Uganda for being inspired by a past characterized by violence, insecurity and fear which drove many nationals into exile in countries across the world.

Commissioner Stylianides says that the EU aims to support the most pressing humanitarian needs of refugees and host communities, and the promotion of their self-reliance adding that although Europe is facing an unprecedented migration and refugee crisis, EU commitment towards Uganda has not diminished.

"Yesterday… We visited the Imvepi settlement in Arua. We saw efficient food distribution posts and medical services; we visited classrooms full of smiley children. These people have fled violence and terror, our moral obligation is to help them, to give them their smile back, to give them dignity, to give them hope," He said.

Commissioner Stylianides stressed the need for a lasting solution to the root causes of displacement in South Sudan where lives of many nationals hang in the balance, threatened by brutal violence, famine and hardship.

"Peace in South Sudan is out of reach. Unfortunately. The solution to this crisis lies squarely in the hands of the political leadership. There can be no military solution" He added.

He called on all parties to observe the ceasefire in line with the conclusions of the IGAD Summit on 12 June and to ensure the implementation of the peace agreement and to transform the National Dialogue launched by President Kiir must be transformed into an inclusive political process, truly open to all parties, deemed credible by the South Sudanese people.

 

About the author

Sylvia Nankya
Sylvia is an Editor and Media Trainer with Uganda Radio Network. She has been a URN staff member since 2013. Sylvia has previously worked as a reporter and news anchor with Radio One (2001-2009) and with Vision Group (2009-2011). Six of her active years in Journalism were spent covering the Parliament of Uganda.

Over the past few years, Sylvia has worked to promote the positive development of societies recovering from conflict through training journalists on choices of stories, how they report issues and use of appropriate language in covering conflict and post-conflict situations.

She is an Alumni of RNTC- Holland, Les Aspin Centre for Government at Marquette University-WI, USA and a Community Solutions Fellow.