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Uganda

Uganda

Summary

Uganda is still recovering from the terror and chaos of the Lord’s Resistance Army that ravaged the country from the 1980s to the early 2000s.1 Gender inequality is one of the biggest causes of human rights violations in the country, as many women suffer from abuse and domestic violence.2 Poverty prevents many people from having access to health care, education, and proper nutrition, but there are no strong government development policies in place that can stop this endemic problem.3 1 http://www.hrw.org/news/2012/03/21/qa-joseph-kony-and-lords-resistance-army 2 https://www.theguardian.com/global-development-professionals-network/2014/aug/29/domestic-violence-uganda 3 http://www.worldbank.org/en/country/uganda/brief/uganda-poverty-assessment-2016-fact-sheet

Demographics

Nationality
Ugandan
Population
34,758,809 (July 2013 est.)
Ethnic Groups
Languages
Religions

Explore Uganda Subcases

Click and view Uganda subcases and learn more about our Uganda

Environment
Family
Human Rights
Education
Poverty
Religion
Clean Water
Economy
Government
Health
Children
Animals

Environment

Uganda’s environment faces serious problems as a result of their heavy reliance on natural resources. Major concerns include overgrazing, deforestation, and soil erosion. These issues are due in part to agricultural practices that compromise Uganda’s forests and resources in order to sell and boost economic development. Basic survival and economic sustainability are often achieved at the cost of the environment.1 As the population expands, natural resources come under even greater threat. With the country’s population of 38 million growing at a rate of 3% per year, these pressures could be insurmountable without sustainable action at both the national and community levels.2

Family

Uganda’s typical family structure has the man as the primary provider and head of the household. The extended family has a very important role, and children are raised as much by the community as they are by their parents.2 Polygamy is practiced and culturally acceptable in Uganda. 31% of Ugandan Christian men claim to have more than one wife. Women are often bought for a dowry, which is an exchange of money or goods for the woman’s hand in marriage.2 The culture of male dominance leads to a prevalence of domestic abuse against women. In the capital city of Kampala, over 50% of women report that they have experienced partner violence.3

Human Rights

Women in Uganda are subject to inequality and violence that often results in serious human rights violations. Human trafficking and rape also present serious threats to the well being and safety of women in Uganda. While the government has tried to take initiatives to prevent violence against women and provide more equality, discrepancies still remain.1 Another serious human rights issue Uganda faces is the Lord’s Resistance Army. This movement has committed human right violations, many at the hands of abducted child soldiers, under the leadership of Joseph Kony.2 Uganda is also home to over 1 million refugees, the majority of whom have fled unstable conditions in South Sudan. Despite the country’s open-door policy to refugees, they do not have enough funding and humanitarian aid to supply Read More the refugees with everything they need.3 Show Less

Education

Ugandan children face significant barriers to education. Since Uganda has one of the fastest growing populations in the world, there are more Ugandans under the age of 18 than there are adults. 90% of children enroll in primary school, but only one-quarter of those students finish. Additionally, there is a lack of teachers, and many teachers attempt to work other jobs in order to make ends meet. This problem is so rampant that in 2014, 40% of public school classrooms did not have a teacher teaching in them.1 Uganda abolished school fees in 1996 in hopes that the enrollment would increase. While the rates did increase, schools now struggle with overcrowded classrooms that put an immense strain on their facilities and resources. One of the Read More biggest obstacles to children receiving education is poverty—20% of families cannot afford the price of school supplies and lunches for their children.2 Show Less

Poverty

Despite the relative progress towards poverty reduction that Uganda has experienced in recent years, they remain one of the poorest countries in the world. Reduction in poverty has come as a result of peace and stability in the nation, along with favorable weather and farming conditions that provide farmers with more income. However, the country still needs improved development policies to create long-term poverty reduction.2 Although the rate of countrywide poverty has decreased, discrepancies in poverty occur between urban and rural communities. Nearly 27% of the rural population (approximately 8 million people) lives below the national rural poverty line, which means they exist on less than $1.25 per day.1

Religion

Uganda’s citizens practice many different religions, and religious freedom is guaranteed by its constitution.1 About 66% of the population is Christian, primarily divided between Roman Catholics and Protestants. About 16% of the population identifies as Muslim, typically aligning as Sunni. Traditional religious beliefs and customs are often practiced in conjunction with Christianity and Islam.2

Clean Water

The Ugandan people have limited access to clean water. 8 million Ugandans still lack access to clean water, making them vulnerable to diseases like cholera and diarrhea. In fact, over 4,500 children die every year from diarrhea caused by unsafe water and poor sanitation in Uganda.1, 3 Even though conditions have improved over the past 10 years, many people still rely on open wells and streams to gather water, which puts them at a greater risk for drinking contaminated water. Farmers also struggle to produce crops and earn a living due to poor water quality.2 In addition, over 22 million people lack access to adequate sanitation in Uganda, which represents almost two thirds of the population.3 These communities, both urban and rural share overcrowded outdoor Read More latrines. Show Less

Economy

Uganda has abundant natural resources that greatly contribute to the huge agricultural outputs that carry the bulk of the GDP. Over 70% of the workforce is employed in some capacity of the agricultural sector. Currency reform is one of the main foundations of the economic reforms and it has led to a commitment towards lowering inflation. The main export country of Uganda is South Sudan, and instability in the country has begun to lower the the economic outputs for Uganda, as well as increased the stream of South Sudanese refugees seeking asylum in Uganda.1 Corruption within the country has led to a decreased interest in foreign investment and has lowered the expected economic growth from remaining sectors.2

Government

Uganda’s government has executive, legislative, and judicial branches.1 The country has undergone political turmoil, as well as economic difficulty, but has tried to decrease corruption since 1986, when the National Resistance Movement came into power. Despite these efforts, political corruption remains an issue.2 Corruption scandals have affected aid sent to the country, and humanitarian aid has been stolen by government officials. Ugandan citizens reported one of the highest rates of corruption amongst all East African nations in regards to police, taxation, and the judicial system.3

Health

The Ugandan people are subject to poor healthcare and serious health issues. More than 1 million Ugandans are living with HIV/AIDS, which has drastically increased the early mortality rate. On average, 28,000 people die from AIDS each year.1 The doctor to patient ratio is 1 to 24,000. Every year, over 100,000 children under the age of five die from malnutrition and preventable diseases.3 This has led to Uganda’s health care performance being ranked as one of the worst in the world.4 The overall life expectancy for Ugandans is one of the lowest in Africa, at just 55 years. Additionally, the fertility rate is very high with an average of six children born per woman, but maternal and live birth care are insufficient, with 16 women Read More dying every day during childbirth.24 There is no health insurance available to poor citizens, so many suffer from treatable conditions because they don’t have access to proper healthcare.2 Show Less

Children

Children’s rights in Uganda are among some of the worst in the world. Children suffer from severe poverty, low life expectancy, hunger, poor health indicators, and limited access to education. Children often do not have access to adequate nutrition due to a lack of adequate food.1 Additionally, 34% of children under age five experience stunted growth due to the lack of available food.2 Health issues extend past nutrition to include the AIDS epidemic, which has caused the death of over 1 million Ugandans and left over 1 million children without parents.3 Additionally, children who were abducted and forced to act as child soldiers by the Lord’s Resistance Army in the late 1990s continue to try to assimilate back into society. The threat of children being Read More employed as soldiers is, although lower than it was during the conflict, still present.4 Thousands of children in Uganda are kidnapped annually, and an alarming number become victims of child sacrifice at the hands of witch doctors.5 Show Less

Animals

Uganda has two wildlife reserves to protect its diverse animal and plant population. Animals such as elephants and gorillas are native to the country, and are a large draw for safari tourism. Ivory poaching is the biggest threat to the elephant population in the region.1 Other animals such as lions, antelope, giraffes, and buffaloes can be found in the savanna.2

Uganda

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