Kampala — The government has embarked on a process of establishing the number of Ugandans working with regional and international organisations to which Uganda subscribes.
The move was set into motion on Thursday by the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Mr Patrick Mugoya, writing a memo to select Ugandan diplomats asking them to compile and remit the information back to Kampala in one day.
The memo, tagged "URGENT" in red ink, was addressed to Uganda's Permanent Representatives to the Missions in New York and Geneva, Uganda's High Commissioners in Nairobi and London and Ambassadors in Paris, Rome, Brussels, Berlin and Addis Ababa.
"The ministry is in the process of engaging the UN system and national stakeholders regarding Ugandans working in regional and international organisations. To inform the engagement, it is necessary to establish the Ugandans working in those organisations by name and the positions that they hold," the letter read in parts.
He added: "This is to request you to provide this information on Ugandans employed in regional and international organisations in your area of accreditation to facilitate the engagements that the government intends to have."
Knowledgeable sources within the Ministry of Foreign Affairs have told Sunday Monitor that the decision was driven by the need to ascertain how much Uganda benefits from the international organisations, to which it contributes about $30m per year. Such questions came up recently when the ministry's officials appeared before a committee of Parliament.
Mr Hood Katuramu, the chairperson of the parliamentary Committee on Foreign Affairs, said: "It is good [to conduct an audit] because whatever we are doing there must be a cost-benefit analysis. Whatever we are appropriating, the nation should be benefitting in both the near and distant future."
We were unable to reach Mr Mugoya or the ministry spokesperson for a comment on the matter.