The Uganda Parliamentary Forum on Water,Sanitation and Hygiene
THE UGANDA PARLIAMENTARY FORUM ON WATER, SANITATION AND HYGIENE
The Parliamentary Forum on Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (PFWASH) was set up in 2012 to respond to water, sanitation and hygiene issues in the country.
The Forum was created basing on the recommendation by WaterAid Uganda in 2012 after its study which looked at the role of Parliament in ensuring that citizens have access to safe drinking water, sanitation and hygiene including policy making, policy regulation, budgeting, ensuring Government accountability and citizen representation.
The Forum was formed mainly to enable MPs from both political divide to freely interact with each other and with civil society and development partners around WASH issues.
The Forum is an independent network of over 120 Ugandan Parliamentarians, civil society organizations, and members of the private sector who recognize and appreciate the desire and need for immediate action in responding to WASH pressing and threatening issues and is now working hard to strengthen its capacity and role in the sector and the country at large.
WASH Forum is an umbrella that provides a mechanism through which Uganda can strengthen linkages between the parliament, different sectors, local Government, the local community, and civil society on WASH related issues and challenges in the country. This can be achieved through advocacy for better sector regulations, legislation, budget / resource allocation, coordination, research and oversight of the sector deliberations in regard to WASH.
UPF-WASH provides a voice that facilitates and encourages direct dialogue to promote a more comprehensive approach to dealing with all WASH related issues including advocating for a comprehensive mechanism to mitigate the negative effects of WASH related complaints and WASH policy regulation in order to reduce the morbidity and mortality attributed to poor WASH hence fostering growth and development.
The Forum works in partnership to reinforce cooperation between Parliamentarians, policy makers, the local community, civil society, development institutions, and non governmental organizations as well as the private sector.
Mandate of the Forum
To advocate for better sectoral policy formulation and management on all WASH issues in the country’’
Sustainable Access to safe and affordable Water, Sanitation and Hygiene for all
Advocate for increased access to safe water, sanitation and hygiene through regulation and coordinated efforts across all sectors in Uganda
- Social inclusion
- Professionalism (Excellence)
The Forum has an elected Executive Committee which comprises of 10 (ten) members namely; the Chairperson; Hon. Amongin Jacqueline, Vice Chairperson; Hon. Centenary Robert, General Secretary Hon. Aol Jacqueline, Treasurer Hon. Anyakun Ester, Publicity Secretary Majegere Waira, representatives from the different regions of Uganda, Northern Hon. Atiku Bernard, Western Hon. Katoto Hatwib, Central Hon. Kitata Abdu, Eastern Hon. Khainza Justine and an Advisor Hon. Opolot Jacob
The Executive Committee is drawn from Members of Parliament from all political divides and all regions with the Right Honourable Speaker as its Patron, and serves for five years in each respective position.
The Forum secretariat management is composed of the Programmes Coordinator, Programmes officer and the Finance & Administration manager as well as other personnel who may be hired in accordance with labour demands at a particular time frame.
The Forum has a very clear constitution which sets out election procedure for the Executive Committee, lengths of terms of office, meetings and voting procedure.
WASH situation in Uganda
Water, sanitation and hygiene are vital components of sustainable development and the alleviation of poverty and hygienic related diseases.
Fresh water resources account for only 2.7% of all the water available in the world while the world’s population which stands at 7.4 Billion is growing at a rate of 1.13%.
There is growing demand for clean and safe water and a high rate of contamination of water sources hence the need of water conservation and recycling to ensure sustainability of water supply.
Strategic Objective One: To strengthen the visibility of UPF WASH in the country
This objective is intended to explore the existence and relevance of the Forum and make it known to the general public through its WASH related activities
Strategic Objective Two: To advocate for the development of effective sectoral regulations for WASH
This is intended to promote affordable policies which address societal WASH related issues
Strategic Objective Three: To carry out operational research to inform WASH related decision making process.
This is intended to provide information on the existing WASH related gaps in order to generate evidence based WASH policies
Strategic Objective Four: To strengthen the sustainability of the Forum
This focuses on resource mobilization to support the life span of the Forum
Strategic Objective Five: Advocate for rational resource allocation and utilization for WASH related interventions
The intention of this objective is to ensure adequate resource allocation to WASH and efficiency in using these resources
Way forward for Uganda as a way of solving the sanitation crisis.
- Addressing it requires action from government at all levels, members of Parliament, business, civil society as well as from households.
- Strengthen the sanitation sector especially in schools
- Work on the SDGs target and take it as an immediate and urgent political priority.
- Observe the country’s promises to improve sanitation and implement commitments made at national, regional and global levels.
- Allocate higher investments to WASH
The work / duties of the Forum
The Forum plays an advocacy role on all WASH related issues at all levels in Uganda.
Broadly, the Forum is set to achieve the following;
- To advocate for the development of effective sectoral regulations for WASH
- To carry out operational research to inform WASH related decision making process.
- To advocate for rational resource allocation and utilization for WASH related interventions
- To strengthen the sustainability of the Forum
- To strengthen the visibility of the Forum
- Influence WASH budget allocation
- Track remittance and resource utilization
- Sensitization of the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning on the importance of WASH
- Carrying out research for data
- Problem identification in WASH sub-sector (needs assessment)
- Bench marking with other countries
- Attending sectoral meetings
- Development of information, education and communication materials
- Participation in WASH related events eg WASH days, sectoral meetings, environmental days, WASH annual events, etc
- A bill on bulungi bwansi to have all Ugandans responsible for sanitation and hygiene
Achievements of the Forum
- Statement towards the Sanitation crisis
In 2014 UPF-WASH issued a statement in the house of Parliament during world toilet day on the status of Sanitation in Uganda. The Forum tasked the Ministry of Works and Transport to include the aspect of all new highway roads being constructed to have a highway toilet so as to put into check open defecation practices.
- Motion on Menstrual Hygiene Management
The Forum, through its chairperson Hon. Amongin Jacqueline moved a motion on the floor of Parliament on the state of menstrual management in Schools. The motion calls for all government schools to provide emergency sanitary towels in schools as a means of sustaining girls in school.
- Draft private member’s Bill on “Uganda National Works Bill, 2016”
In its efforts of ensuring WASH issues take cardinal position in the country; UPF-WASH has come up with programmes of community involvement and participation in matters of WASH. Hence, the development of draft bill to the house of Parliament on National Community works Act, 2016 locally known as, “Bulungi Bwansi”. The Bill moved by UPF-WASH member Hon. Mbwatekamwa Gaffa and Seconded by Hon. Amongin Jacqueline (chairperson of the Forum) and Hon. Mulindwa Ssozi was endorsed and approved by the Speaker of Parliament.
UGANDA PARLAIMENTARY FORUM ON WATER SANITATION AND HYGIENE
P.O BOX 7178 KAMPALA,
TEL: 041 4377786, O772 631211, 0782 380575