Ministry of Health has reiterated that adolescents and young people in general remain the center of it focus if Uganda is to attain the targets lined under Sustainable Development Goals, majorly, the 3rd and 5th SDGs.
This commitment was declared by Dr. James Mugisha while speaking to the delegation from European Union that was in Uganda to discuss opportunities for improving Sexual and reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR), with specific attention on young people.
The meeting was held at Golf course Hotel in Kampala. The meeting was between partners and civil society organizations and was organized by Action for Health Uganda (A4HU) in partnerships with National planning authority (NPC).
“Our focus as ministry of Health is on adolescents’ health; we know that they contribute a lot to the rates of maternal health due to their underdeveloped bodies but also poor access to information and health necessitates” says Dr. Mugisha in a flamboyant tone.
He was responding to various concerns from organizations, mostly youth serving, about the delays by the ministry in instigating the sexuality frame work
“We the youth are products of our time, without the sexuality framework, we really can’t do much”. Questioned Derrick Nsibirwa, the program Associate at Center for Health Human Rights & Development (CEHURD).
Dr. Dan Mulokola, while giving an overview on the Global Financing Facility (GFF) said investing in young women and girls is critical in uplifting world’s poorest countries to better productive nations.
He added that special attention needs to be shifted to those in poor rural areas who luck easy access to life saving interventions.
“People in poor rural areas are need these life-saving interventions more than urban ones, it is important that we critically focus on them” Dr. Mulokola stressed.
Earlier in the day, there had been serious concerns from partners concerning the GFF schemes regarding the RMNACAH focus areas, from where it emerged that most partners had little information about the said financing facility. However, to some partners, this was simply lack of self-drive in getting to know the scheme.
“We have more than 150 civil society organizations, most of which work around the REMNACAH focus areas, shockingly, little is known about GFF yet we are in the third year of implementation” says Esther Nasikye from world vision. She called upon CSO’s to;
“be observant and aware of these funding schemes because most of the funds are national loans, which must be repaid and must be accounted for ensuring accountability is our role, let’s make it happen”. She said as she made a call for CSO’s participation in upcoming CSO’s quarterly meeting that is slated for 30th April 2019, at Imperial royal hotel.
Stephie, the European Union focal person, who also led the EU visiting team called on implementing partners to stay resilient and committed to achieving the RMNACAH focus areas but also always lookout for the many funding opportunities in the EU. This as she responded to concerns from partners about the said the under spend at the EU much as partners said there is not enough space provided for them to access the funds.
The director general National Population Council Dr. Jotham Musinguzi appreciated the role played by CSO’s especially in the health sector.
“Without CSO’s, government achievements wouldn’t be as much as they are now. Your support tremendous” Dr. Musinguzi explained.
The meeting concluded with a call to all implementing organizations in the development of the European Union factsheet which will always be the entry point for resource mobilization to the EU funding mechanisms.
“We pledge as CSO’s that we shall position ourselves on the EU agenda with this fact sheet for proper engagements” says Dr Jane Wakikoona, Head of Action for Health Uganda as she closed the breakfast meeting officially.