The session brought together representatives from the line Ministries (MWE, MLHUD, MAAIF); Kampala City Council Authority, private sector; water and land rights champions; media; academia and staff from project partners to deliberate on integrated water and land resource management in Uganda with a goal of achieving the national development and transformation goals.
Making his key note address, Mr. Stephen Muwaya the National Coordinator – Sustainable Land Management MAAIF noted that although land degradation is recognised as a major impediment to development, it has not received the desired attention in the development agenda of Uganda. However, he noted that MAAIF working with other four Ministry sectors has development the strategic investment framework for sustainable land management. He urged CSOs to undertake a review of the framework and employ it in their awareness creation and advocacy for more resources to support land based investments.
Land is a critical foundation for many livelihoods due to its contribution to agriculture and the national economy. People’s livelihoods in Uganda are inextricably linked to sound natural resource management. On the other hand, water is a key strategic resource and access to clean water is a fundamental human right. As such maintaining good water quality and adequately managed aquatic resources is essential for advancing development and promoting a healthy population. Controlling industrial pollution and soil erosion to ensure good water quality should be a key interest of the Legislature. Water resource use planning needs to be improved, particularly as water resources are increasingly being used for commercial agriculture and hydropower.
Water and land are basic resources for virtually all socio-economic activities and these resources should be sustainably utilized to cater for the future generation.