The Local Economic Department (LED) is one of the departments under the Directorate of Local Administration in the Ministry. It is situated on the Southern wing of 5th Floor, Workers House. The department was established in the financial year 2018/2019 and effectively came into being in March 2019.
2.0 LED Department Structure and status
The LED Department structure comprises of a Commissioner, an Assistant Commissioner, two Principal Development Officers, two Senior Development Officers, two Development officers, a Senior Personnel Secretary and two drivers.
The deployed officers so far include:
|2||Oleny Charles Ojok||Assistant Commissioner||Contract|
|3||Charles Abola||Technical Assistant||Contract|
|4||Emmanuel Muhanguzi||Principal Development Officer||Permanent|
|5||Faisal Kikulukunyu Ssali||Principal Development Officer||Probation|
|6||Julius Muheirwe||Senior Development Officer||Permanent|
|7||Allen Namayanja||Senior Personal Secretary||Permanent|
The establishment of the LED department follows Government’s adoption of the promotion of Local Economic Development as a sixth objective of the Decentralization Policy and a subsequent development of the Uganda National Local Economic Development Policy of 2014. The Vision for this policy is: “A vibrant and competitive private sector-led local economy for poverty reduction, wealth creation and prosperity”. The Mission for this policy is: “To create a local governance mechanism which promotes a conducive economic and political environment for private sector investment, employment in local areas for improved household incomes and service delivery”. The Overall Goal of this policy is “A transformed local government system that facilitates effective business-oriented locality development with a focus on poverty reduction and sustainable wealth creation”.
The National LED Policy provides a framework for partnerships in local economic development and to serve as a vehicle for promoting and implementing LED initiatives at local government level in Uganda and is intended to further deepen the decentralization process, eradicate poverty and ensure inclusive, sustainable and equitable economic growth at locality level.
3.0 Core mandate of the LED Department
The departments’ core functions in line with the policy mission and overall goal is to:
- Support to LGs through training to incorporate LED activities into the LG Planning and budgeting:
- Promotion of employment and wealth creation through support to the development of new industrial/business parks to promote skilling of women and youth, production and wealth creation.
- Stimulating development of local economies through enhanced production with a view to expanding local revenue generation by LGs
- Re-orienting LGs from a consumptive nature into business orientation and investment
- Support to the development of public infrastructure to boost production and market accessibility
- Supporting intra-private sector dialogues, cooperation and networks to encourage experience sharing, and
- Facilitating private investments through linkages with MDAs and other regulatory bodies
4.0 Key activities /interventions being undertaken
Since it’s operationalization, the department has provided leadership and support to the following specific LED initiatives at the Ministry.
- Presidential Initiative to Promote Agro-Industrialization for Local Economic Development (LED) in Rwenzori Region (AGRI-LED). This initiative is currently being coordinated by Assistant Commissioner Charles Olarker under the direct supervision of the Permanent Secretary.
- Presidential Initiative for Zonal Industrial Parks for Skills Development, Value Addition and Wealth creation. Support included engaging mobilization of Local Government authorities to embrace and provide land for the Parks. This has so far been concluded in the 18 out of 20 proposed zones.
- Creating awareness within Local Governments aimed at causing a paradigm shift within LGs i.e. change from consumptive nature into business orientation and investment.
- Support to LGs through training to incorporate LED activities into Local Government planning and budgeting to cause the needed development
- Development of the Local Economic Development Strategy
- Conducted Monitoring visits to selected Government projects i.e. markets developed under MATIP I &II and the Soroti Fruit Factory to identify operational bottlenecks; explore opportunities and recommend appropriate action. This activity is still on going
- Facilitation of private investments, a case in point being linking Pristine Foods to the Ministry of Trade Industry and Cooperatives in line with issues relating to certification of their powdered and pasteurised eggs and, to the Uganda Export Promotion Board to explore export opportunities.
- Engaging with Chief Administrative Officers to create awareness of LED as a key approach for Local revenue enhancement and ultimately efficient service delivery in the respective LGs.
- Participation in various meetings and fora of key stakeholders hence raising awareness of the existence of a department in the Ministry for LED and also the importance of LED to locality development.
- Providing leadership in re-operationalizing the Northern Uganda Development of Economic Infrastructure and Promotion of Livelihoods (NUDIEL) program in the Acholi-Lango Sub region.
5.0 Proposals for effective promotion of Local Economic Development
- For the Ministry to cause development in Local Governments, there is a strong and urgent need to align implementation coordination of all development projects in the Ministry i.e. AGRI-LED, LEGS, PRELNOR, NUDIEL, DINU under PST and MATIP II under Urban Administration to the thrust of the National LED policy. All these projects have a strong nexus to Local Economic Development. Coordination of all project teams can be brought together centrally to enhance visibility of the Local Economic Development within the Local Government Sector.
- Expand the annual resources allocated to the Department. The Department is currently using a budget of Ugx. 200m in FY 2019/2020. The estimated budget allocation for FY 2020/2021 is about Ugx 300M. Aware that the Ministry under LED department is central in the execution of the ongoing implementation of the Zonal Industrial Parks for Skills Development, Value Addition and Wealth creation under the Presidential Initiative; monitoring and coordination of all Government projects within local Governments; among other activities as enshrined in the National LED policy of 2014, in view of the task, the current budgetary allocations appear a drop in the ocean. In the foregoing, it is necessary to support the Department in its quest for more resources.
- A complete LED structure, would enhance our ability to handle more effectively the wider mandate of the Department.
LOCAL ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT- LED
- Support to LGs through training to incorporate LED activities into Local Government Planning and Budgeting.
- Support to development of new Industrial/Business parks to promote skilling of women and youth aimed at promotion of employment and wealth creation.
- Stimulate production with a view of expanding revenue generated by LGS
- Cause a paradigm shift within LGs i.e. change from consumptive nature into business orientation and investment
- Promotion of Private Public Partnerships
- Support to the development of infrastructure i.e. roads, electricity energy, communication to boost local production and market accessibility
- Supporting intra-private sector dialogues, cooperation and networks to encourage experience sharing
- Facilitating private investments through linkages with MDAs and other regulatory authorities