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Right2Grow Uganda Hosts the National Children’s Parliament

“We are holding this National Children’s Parliament at a point when children are dying of hunger in Karamoja sub-region of Uganda, and the price of food commodities and fuel are very high. It is important to bring the voices and aspirations of children at the center of our national planning and budgeting so that we have a development agenda that is cognizant of the unique needs of all children and young people,” Mr. Gerald Kato, Right2Grow Uganda Country Coordinator, noted while giving welcome remarks at the National Children’s Parliament hosted on 12th July, 2022.

The Children’s Parliament is a child friendly space created to give children an opportunity to participate in the national planning, legislative processes and budgeting and seeks to influence the decisions of governments to prioritize children’s rights.

Children representatives from schools within Eastern, Central, Northern and Western regions of Uganda, elected a Speaker who chaired discussions on Food and Nutrition Security, Climate Change and Resilience, Water Sanitation and Hygiene as well as Child Protection. They called upon government to reduce taxes so that prices of food commodities go down, sensitize and encourage communities to grow more food crops and construct safe water sources, stakeholders to ensure that every school has a school garden, farmers to plant high quality seeds, everyone to practice re-afforestation and afforestation, “the government of Uganda should reduce taxes on food commodities so that the cost of food reduces and our parents are able to buy enough nutritious foods for us,” Tulina Hairah Mudde from Gyagenda Primary School.

Among other dignitaries, children hosted Hon. Magret Makhoha, the Chairperson of the Uganda Parliamentary Forum for Children who committed to table the raised issues before the Parliament of Uganda and the National Children’s Authority represented by Mr. Tom Mulundu, Research Policy and Planning Officer who encouraged children to always speak up on issues affecting them.

A position paper was developed and presented before the Africa Children’s Parliament in Lusaka and advanced to the African Union Mid-Year Coordination Meeting for Heads of States held between 14th and 17th July, 2022. It was received with interest and positive reactions were received. The Children’s Parliament amplified voices, needs and concerns of children in Uganda for the African Union to place their needs and rights on top of the development agenda.

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