Gen. Moses Ali, the first deputy prime minister has said the peace and safety in Uganda today is the reason we have many refugees coming in what he called an “Island of Peace”.
“The first thing that attracts refugees is peace. If we were having the same problems like South Sudan, I don’t think refugees would be coming,” Ali said.
The retired general, reminiscing about the 40 years of turmoil the northern Uganda went through, added: “Now that we’ve no problems refugees from not only Sudan, but across Africa can come.”
Gen. Ali also attributed the geographical location of Uganda amidst all war ravaged areas to the continued influx of refugees in the Pearl of Africa.
“Geographically we are also in the centre of the continent; half of Uganda is southern hemisphere and part northern hemisphere, more so surrounded by war-torn countries, making it easily accessible.”
The general made the remarks on Thursday at an event part of Uganda solidarity summit at Ayilo I Refugee Settlement Distribution Centre in Pakelle Sub County, Adjumani, where he was the guest of honour.
Accompanied by the Minister of State for northern region Grace Kwiyucwiny and delegates from Turkey, Sweden among other European Union counties, the team made a tour of refugee camps in the said sub-county.
Some of the notable facilities that were visited include health centres, schools, a market in the settlement centre, started by refugees and now boosting business in the area, plus enabling skill refugees in entrepreneurship.
A hybrid solar powered water system built with over USD10,000 was also checked on. It supplies water to a population of over 6000 people.
At the event, refugees exhibited some of their products including confectionaries, craft works, music performances among other things.
The minister also thanked the Adjumani community for providing the refugees with land (over 3000 hectares) and for being hospitable.