Lowcock to Uganda: ‘We hope the freeze will not last long’

While in Uganda, U.K. Department for International Development Permanent Secretary Mark Lowcock said the British government hopes to reinstate funding swiftly to the African country — but under certain conditions. Photo by: DfID

Barely a month after the United Kingdom froze budget support for Uganda, a top aid official visited the country to congratulate its development.

Department for International Development Permanent Secretary Mark Lowcock also commented on the freeze, saying that the U.K. government hopes to reinstate funding swiftly — but under certain conditions.

“We hope the freeze will not last long. We want the stolen money returned. We think it is important that administrative and criminal sanctions are taken against perpetrators,” Lowcock said, noting that aid can only be provided where “conditions are conducive” and funds are rightfully used.

Frozen budget support comprises only 10 percent of U.K. aid to Uganda this year. DfID programs in areas such as trade, malaria, family planning and social protection have not been affected by the freeze.

In his speech, Lowcock also shared his thoughts on ways aid and development agencies could tailor their programs to meet the needs of an increasingly economically robust Africa.

  • Development agencies should clarify what their role is in Africa and where their assistance should be focused.

  • Development agencies ‘need to offer genuine value’ and should be more responsive and flexible to each country’s needs.

  • Development agencies need to stay abreast of changing development challenges and adjust their focus accordingly.

  • Development agencies ‘need to sustain and increase aid.’

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    Adrienne Valdez

    Adrienne Valdez is a staff writer for Devex, covering breaking international development news for the Development Newswire. Before joining Devex, Adrienne worked as a news correspondent for a public-sector modernization publication.