19 July 2012

Uganda: 25 More Districts Created

Government has announced the creation of 25 more districts for effective administration and bringing services closer to people.

There are currently 111 districts, excluding the Capital city, Kampala which is no longer regarded as a district. The creation of the 25 more districts which is being phased from this year to 2015 will increase the number of districts to 136 plus the Capital city.

The new districts were announced by the local government minister Adolf Mwesige, when he tabled a motion for Parliament to approve the districts. He argued that creation of the proposed districts had taken into consideration several factors.

"These included means of communication, the geographical features, the destiny of the population, the economic viability of the areas and the wishes of the people concerned," he said.

Two districts, Kagadi and Kakumiro curved out of Kibaale district took effect on July 1, 2012. Seven will take effect July 1, 2013, another seven effective July 1, 2014 and the nine on July 1, 2015.

In 1986 when NRM took power, Uganda had 33 districts which increased to 81 districts by 2008. The districts increased to 112 by 2011, but reduced to 111 after the Capital city ceased to be a district.

There has been agitation for creation of more districts. This agitation has been fuelled by local politicians and ethnic communities seeking autonomy. In the run up to the 2011 elections, 25 new districts were formed and approved by Parliament in 2010.

Deputy Speaker, Jacob Oulanyah who chaired the House directed the parliamentary committee on public service and local government to scrutinize the proposed new districts within a week and report to the House.

"This House will within a week's time be ready to receive the report of the committee on the new districts," he said and stopped debate on the matter, as many MPs were clamoring to make contributions.

Oulanyah said there were some contentious issues regarding some of the new districts and therefore the committee has to listen to them and make recommendations.

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