UGANDA FORESTRY WORKING GROUP Presentation to the Kenya Forest Working Group Management Committee Ceaser Kimbugwe Coordinator, UFWG 28th June 2013
Deforestation in Uganda (1) • Uganda’s forests cover estimated at 3,556,000 ha is 17% of the total land area of the country presenting a reduction from the 4.9 million ha in 1990. • Forests on private land constitute 64% of Uganda’s forest cover which is a reduction from 70% in 1990. Inside protected areas, forests reduced from 1.47 million ha to 1.3 million ha
Deforestation in Uganda (2) • At this rate all privately owned forests and woodlands could be converted within 62 years • UFWG is mandated to demand for accountability from government to ensure responsible forest management in Uganda.
Who we are… • ………a network of forestry stakeholders composed of national NGOs, Forest Resource User Associations, Academia and research institutions as well as individuals • ……formed in 2001 to provide a platform that would influence developments in the sector. • as well as independently monitor implementation of Forestry Policy, Forest Plan and Forestry Act.
Why UFWG? • To mobilize individual, institutions and CSOs to support the implementation of the national forestry policy, laws and plan with a pro-poor focus • To advocate for compliance and accountability in the management of the forest sector. • To progressively develop capacity of members in policy analysis, advocacy and independent monitoring.
Vision, Goal & Mission • The Vision “Uganda’s forestry resources managed sustainably”. • The Goal “An effective network providing credible support and advice to forestry sector in Uganda”. • The Mission is “To promote sustainable forestry resources management through advocacy, lobbying, generation and dissemination of knowledge and information and demonstration of good forestry management practices”.
Membership and Admin Structure • Organizations: CSOs, academic and research institutions , CBOs, Private Sector, Government. • Networks: Forestry related networks, resource users’ associations • Individuals: experts interested or actively engaged in promoting sustainable forest management General Assembly: consisting of all members of the UFWG is the apex decision making and reference Organ for the Network Steering Committee: consisting of 9 elected members from UFWG membership of which 1/3 are women as required by the UFWG memorandum Secretariat: The Secretariat of UFWG is Environmental Alert (EA)
Why Join UFWG • Share knowledge and experiences on forestry within and outside Uganda; • Amplify a collective voice on pertinent issues in the forestry sector; • Pool resources and expertise for advocacy and capacity building; • Harness and benefit from existing opportunities in the forest sector
What have been the achievements 1. Collaboration with GoU • Development and implementation of the NFP • Active participation in the policy review process of 2000 - 2002 • Active participation on the institutional reforms of the time (the NFA, FID, DFS) – 2002 onwards • Active participation in the development of the National Forestry Program – translating policy into action; strategies with indicative roles and responsible institutions. • Active participation in the development of the National Forestry and Tree Planting Act,2003
Joint ventures • In 2004 – the undertaking implementation of the FAO-NFP Facility – implementing aspects of the NFP of immediate interest to the reforms • 2006 to date - addressing challenges of operationalising District Forest Services (DFS). • 2010 – 2011, REDD+ (Reducing Emissions from Degradation and Deforestation) = addressing forest resource issues, stakeholder consultation, development of the Consultation and Participation Strategy, Awareness and Communication Strategy as well as the Conflict Resolution Strategy. The World Banks has consequently approved release of financial resources for the development of the National REDD+ Strategy • 2012 - Review of the Standards and Regulations to support the National Forestry and Tree Planting Act, 2003. • Since 2008, Participation in the Annual JSR and JTR – assessment of performance against set indicators on deliverables in the forest sector • Currently working on the development of customized FSC National Standards aimed at influencing SFM through markets where consumers will demand for certified products
2. Implementation through members • Awareness raising and capacity building for Sustainable Forest Management • through information sharing on various issues including: the drivers and effects of deforestation and forest degradation; contributions of forests and forestry sector to national development; as well as demystifying the policy, legal and institutional framework governing the forests and forestry sector in Uganda. • Policy, planning, lobbying and advocacy engagements • seeking their attention to the plight of forestry in the country, targeting MPs and District Local Government leaderships • Improved afforestation – planting trees (both commercial and for social needs) • Supporting communities, very small, small and medium tree planting, woodlots that are individually owned. • Reduction in deforestation – fighting degazettement (Mabira, Namanve and Kalangala among others) • Ecosystem based approaches – IUCN (Mt Elgon, WWF in Rwenzori, EA in West Nile, TT in Middle north)
Cover and back page of the Tree Planting Guide produced by Tree Talk for the Uganda Forestry Working Group
3. Lobbying and advocacy • Degazettment of forests – various tactics (media, briefs, IEC materials, breakfast meetings with MPs, demonstration, loose coalitions) • Review of the NFP to take care of new concerns (carbon credits, climate change concerns) – internal delays within government • Finalization of forestry standards and guidelines – at cabinet • Benefit sharing – revenue from products and services • Improved capacity of sector institutions (HR and financial) • Increased funding for the sector – membership on the ENR-SWG, representation on the Budget Working Group, influencing the ENR Donor Group
Challenges • Complacency and self-satisfaction (managers and politicians) • Increasing levels of impunity and recrimination – exemptions from punishment (Butamira case, delay in hearing environment cases) • Corruption – (Licensing, permits, chits) a detriment to community interests and benefits, increasing impacts. • Political interference in the administration and management of the forest sector • Attack on the rule of law • Access to information dilemma • Suppression (media, public debates)
St. Anthony Girls School in Nakasongola – debating whether Mabira Forest should be degazetted.
Community Tree Nursery of Markhamia lutea seedlings in Pader District, N. Uganda