Internal Displacement in Northern Uganda : From Policy to Reality

dc.contributor.advisorLijn, J. van der
dc.contributor.authorRegts, Marijt
dc.description.abstractFor years internal displacement has been neglected on the international agenda. Only recently the phenomenon is receiving more attention. Consequently, more debates and more approaches arise concerning whether or not internally displaced persons (IDPs) should be considered as a separate category of concern, and which approach is best in order to end internal displacement. In this arena of discussion the framework for durable solutions has been developed, providing as a guiding line for national authorities and the international community. The framework presents various factors that should determine the end of internal displacement, meaning that durable solutions for IDPs have been achieved. The starting point in the search for durable solutions is that IDPs have been able to choose their place of solution either through settlement at the place where they found refuge or through return to their home village or through resettlement someplace else. Subsequently, the framework distinguishes between the processes through which solutions are found and the actual conditions of former IDPs at their place of solution. Uganda is one of the many countries that suffers from the impact of internal displacement. A conflict between the government of Uganda and the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) has troubled the northern region of Uganda since the 1980s. In the 1990s the government called for the protected villages which was the starting point of a massive uproot. IDPs lived in dire situations for many years. Since 2006 stability has returned in the region. The LRA crossed the borders of Uganda into Sudan, Central Republic of Africa and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Despite many attempts, a peace agreement between the government of Uganda and the LRA has never been signed. Nowadays, many IDPs have returned to their home village, the search for durable solutions has started. The central aim of this research is to map the solutions of the government and draw conclusions on how these solutions contribute to the achievement of durable solutions for IDPs. Hence, the central research question is to what extent are the solutions provided by the government of Uganda as a response to the plight of internal displacement durable. The central solution in this research is the Peace, Recovery and Development Plan (PRDP). To answer the central question, this research draws upon a literature study and an empirical field study conducted in Gulu, northern Uganda. Based on the factors included in the framework for durable solutions, conclusions can be drawn on the main findings of this research. Having analyzed the government interventions under the PRDP, the conclusion will show that there is a discrepancy between policy and practice. The PRDP as a document corresponds to all factors included in the framework for durable solutions. Therefore, the document gives high hopes that durable solutions for IDPs will be achieved. However, the practical interventions conducted by the government under the PRDP draw a different picture. First of all, these interventions do not correspond to all factors described in the framework for durable solutions and secondly, those that do correspond are profoundly based on the establishment of hardware structures, like schools, roads, and police posts. Due to a lack of training and empowerment programs, the software component is being neglected, resulting in poor access and functionality of these structures. Overall, the solutions initiated by the government under the PRDP will contribute to durable solutions. However, whether they will be achieved within the timeframe of the PRDP is highly questioned. Derived from the research, various recommendations towards the government of Uganda can be made in an attempt to increase the effectiveness of the PRDP.en_US
dc.thesis.facultyFaculteit der Managementwetenschappenen_US
dc.thesis.specialisationConflicts, Territories and Identitiesen_US
dc.thesis.studyprogrammeMaster Human Geographyen_US
dc.titleInternal Displacement in Northern Uganda : From Policy to Realityen_US
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