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Special Projects: Uganda

Repatriation, Rehabilitation, Resettlement and Reintegration of Reporters in Uganda— Amnesty Commission
The aim of this special project is to assist approximately 15,300 ex-combatants in their reintegration into civilian life, within the context of Uganda's Amnesty Act of 2000. This figure currently includes about 8,000 backlog ex-combatants. The main target group of this project is the Lord's Resistance Army (LRA). Other target groups are ex-members of the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF), People's Redemption Army, West Nile Bank Front (WNBF), FOBA/NOM, Uganda National Democratic Alliance Front (UDA/F) and the Uganda National Freedom Movement/Army (UNFM(A).
The project consists of five components:

1. Sensitization and dialogue: Sensitization will target the public and political leadership, and the messages will focus on conflict resolution through reconciliation. Dialogue will be promoted with the aim of securing peace and stability, and take place between government and potential ex-combatants; between ex-combatants and the community; and amongst ex-combatants themselves.

2. Demobilization and processing of Amnesty Applications: This component includes disarmament and decommissioning of weapons (not financially supported by MDRP); identification, screening and documentation of ex-combatants; issuance of certificate of amnesty; and - in some cases - repatriation.

3. Reinsertion (resettlement) support: The ex-combatants report to reception centers, where the formal procedures for applying for amnesty takes place, and which also undertake activities such as assessing the psycho-social and health status of the ex-combatants, and providing counseling and referral services. The ex-combatants that have been registered and granted amnesty will receive their documentation and cash assistance. The ex-combatants are provided with initial in-kind and cash assistance.

4. Longer-term social and economic reintegration: Social integration activities include extension work with families, religious meetings, and community-welcoming gatherings. Income generating projects and skills development programs will be initiated by the Amnesty Commission in conjunction with partners, and a referral system will be developed that can ensure that ex-combatants are linked to relevant economic and educational opportunities.

5. Institutional strengthening of Amnesty Commission: This component includes the recruitment and training of staff, installment of financial management system, and procurement of equipment.

Status: Grant Agreement for the MDRP funding of the project has been signed in August 2004 and operational activities are to start in December 2004.
Amount: US$4,204,000

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Photo Credits: First picture on left Guy Tillim. Others by UN/DPI