Apologies for not blogging for a fortnight. In justification I was in Uganda for a week with a small group of British MPs. “Junketing MPs” some may say, I would strongly beg to differ. Within Uganda approximately 1.2million people are living in refugee camps as a result of the rebel activities of the “Lords Resistance Army.” We visited one of these camps near the Sudanese border which was an experience that will remain etched on our minds for many years.
I was also able to meet with an inspirational constituent, Kate Rees from Llandogo who has spent 20 years helping homeless children in the country. We spent an afternoon at an orphanage with which she is involved. The desperate poverty and yet surprising cheerfulness of the children who were there was humbling.
The delegation consisted of 2 Conservative and 3 Labour MPs and 2 members of the House of Lords and I can honestly say that political differences will play no part in the report which we will shortly submit to Parliament.
The political situation in Uganda is somewhat complex but in brief we will be urging the Ugandan government to deal more effectively with the LRA insurgents and to begin re-settling the displaced people currently living within the camps. We will also aim to give practical support for the move away from a one party state towards democracy with multi-party elections expected to take place early next year.