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Uganda Witnessed Democratic Index Decline in International Ranking

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Uganda encountered a decline in its Democratic Index, falling short of the anticipated benchmark, as per the findings presented in the Security and Governance Program report unveiled during a launch event in Kampala.

The report disclosed a regression from 4.94 to 4.6%, missing the 7.3% target, signifying a concerning downturn in the country’s global standing. The Democratic Index measures the adherence to democratic principles, evaluating electoral processes, government functionality, political participation, culture, civil liberties, and the fairness of elections on an international scale.

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The Governance and Security Programme, spearheaded by 32 government agencies responsible for upholding the rule of law, security, public policy governance, justice access, human rights promotion, accountability, and transparency, expressed a need for heightened efforts to reach the 7.3% target for 2022/2023 and the subsequent 8.6% target for 2024/2025.

This revelation emerges amid demands from the National Unity Platform Political party for the release of its supporters allegedly detained during and after the 2021 elections. The opposition’s grievances revolve around complaints of illegal detentions, kidnappings, and breaches of freedom of speech by the armed forces.

Minister for Presidency Milly Babalanda, represented by Security Minister Jim Muhwezi, emphasized the necessity for intensive discussions to identify gaps and intensify efforts to achieve the set targets. Babalanda highlighted the urgency of addressing the noted decline.

First Deputy Prime Minister Rebecca Kadaga assured the government’s commitment to improving the Democratic index, striving to foster an enabling environment for democratic governance. She affirmed the government’s dedication to delivering public services despite the challenges faced.

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The report highlighted interventions to combat human trafficking, noting the rescue of approximately 700 trafficking victims in 2022/2023, providing essential support such as shelter, medical care, food, and transportation. However, challenges persisted due to high police population ratios and overwhelming prisoner-to-officer ratios in Uganda Police and prisons.

Furthermore, the report detailed the program’s alignment of submissions to Cabinet with the country’s development goals. It emphasized the review of 217 submissions for coherence with national, regional, and international commitments. Additionally, it noted the translation of the amended Constitution into 21 local languages, contributing to a cumulative total of 33 out of 65 languages.

The Governance and Security Program received a budget allocation of 7.529 trillion Shillings in the current financial year.

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