The Country was largely monarchical in nature. Most of its sub-regions were split into different Kingdoms ruled by chiefs who doubled as political and cultural leaders. Most of these now only foresee the cultural spheres of their kingdoms.
The British Protectorate of Uganda was established in 1894 until the country granted its Independence on 9th October 1962. In 1980’s, the country suffered guerrilla wars as different governments took over power only to be ousted before long. However, all this is history now. Peace has been fully restored in the country.
The Republic of Uganda is governed by the President of the Republic of Uganda, the Government and the Parliament. The country is divided into districts, counties and sub-counties, town councils and municipalities. Elections are held for the President, the Members of Parliaments, Lord Mayors and other local political leaders.
Uganda is part of the East African Community with Kenya, United Republic of Tanzania, Burundi, Rwanda, South Sudan.
As per findings of a National Census carried out in 2014, the country’s Total population is 34.6 million (UBOS). 51% are female, 49% male. Children below 18 years constituted 55% of the population, Youths (18/30 Years) constituted 23% of the population. Population density is 173 per/km². The average annual population growth rate is 3.0%
Uganda has one of the world’s youngest populations. According to end of 2016 report by United States Agency for International Development, over 78% of its citizens are below the age of 30 and about 8 million youth aged between 15 and 30.
Partially responsible for this trend is the high fertility and reduced mortality over the last several decades. Total Fertility Rate (TFR) was 5.8 children per woman. Infant Mortality Rate (IMR) was 53 infant deaths per 1000 Live Births.
The country’s Literacy Rate is 72.2% (of the population aged 10 years and above)
69% of the households depend on Subsistence Farming as their main source of livelihood. 80% of the households are involved in Agriculture.
Nearly one-quarter (25%) of the households is living in urban areas.
20% of the households have access to electricity
The country is neighboured by Kenya (East), Democratic Republic of Congo (West), Tanzania (South), Rwanda (South West) and Sudan (North).
Uganda is a landlocked country with a total area of 236,040 km² of which 36,330 km² are inland water. It is located in Sub-Saharan Africa, on the East African Plateau – zone of the East African Rift. The country is part of the African Great Lakes region and is one of the seven African countries split by the Equator into the Northern and Southern hemispheres.
The climate is mainly equatorial with clear distinctions depending the latitude. The country knows different rainy and dry seasons per year, more or less intense depending the region. Temperatures may vary significantly during day and night from a season to another but also from a region to another during the same season.
From western high top mountains with snow and frequent rains to the North semi-arid in nature, Uganda is gifted by a wide range of biodiversity.
This variety makes Uganda the Pearl of Africa has named by Winston Churchill.
“The kingdom of Uganda is a fairy-tale. You climb up … and at the end there is a wonderful new world. The scenery is different, the vegetation is different, the climate is different, and, most of all, the people are different from anything elsewhere to be seen in the whole range of Africa. For magnificence, for variety of form and colour, for profusion of brilliant life – bird, insect, reptile, beast – for vast scale — Uganda is truly the pearl of Africa.” W. CHURCHILL, My African Journey.
Uganda is characterized by an important part of inland water. Bounded by Mountains (Rwenzori 5109m, Mount Elgond 4321m, Mgahinga 4127m) and freshwater water bodies, the country shares an important part of the Lake Victoria with Kenya and Tanzania.
The South-East part of the country is mainly covered by the Lake which influences the climate and the local livelihood. The city of Jinja (80km East Kampala) is known as the Source of the Nile since the declaration of the explorer JH Speke (1863). From Jinja, the River Nile flows successively through Lake Kyoga, Murchison Falls and Lake Albert making the Nile basin an important part of Uganda. Other lakes such as Lake Edouard and Lake Bunyonyi complete the long list of natural and protected area to explore.
Thanks to its strategic location and various climates, the country is the convergence of different African’s vegetation areas. It is partly for this reason that it attracts over 50% of the continent bird’s species and over 10%e of the world bird’s species. 60 important protected area and 10 National Parks are gazetted and promoted making Uganda a wonderful place to discover in many ways. The national environment conservation policy is affecting positively the Ugandan wildlife by a net increase of the population in the protected area. Two of Uganda’s national parks are recognized by UNESCO as World Heritage Sites: Bwindi Impenetrable National Park and Rwenzori Mountains National Park.
Uganda’s economy grows between 4 to 5% per annum. Inflation averages at 5%. GDP per hab represents 670 USD. Services contribute for more than 50% of the GDP followed by industry and agriculture. The country ranking at the Human Development Index is 163/187 (2015).
According to the World Bank and the African Development Bank : “Uganda’s economic stance remains focused on containing inflationary pressures and on enabling growth by ensuring exchange rate stability and maximising domestic resources mobilisation. Uganda has made progress in reducing poverty and in enhancing gender equality and women’s empowerment. In the short term, large public sector infrastructure projects will continue to be the main driver of economic activity. The country’s economic growth faces a number of risks, delayed completion of the massive public infrastructure program, regional instability, global uncertainty, and credit market constraints.”
The weather- and climate-related changes are also a source of vulnerability for agriculture. Most families depend on substance farming as a source of livelihood.
The development of the tourism sector is a strong asset for the Ugandan economy. Beyond its contribution to the national wildlife and environment conservation policies, tourism impacts directly the local livelihoods. The sector follows a continuous development at human-scale without being industrialized. Uganda is favorable and suitable for green and inclusive tourism.