Uganda By | Sunday, September 9  2012 at  15:05

Full Name
The Republic of Uganda
Origins of name: Derived from the name ‘Baganda’, which is the country’s largest ethnic group, ‘Buganda’ is the name of the Kingdom

Current Leader
Yoweri Museveni

Overview
Uganda is a landlocked country in Eastern Africa
The state has survived two dictatorial regimes under Idi Amin and Milton Obote
Former British colony
Achieved independence on the March 1, 1962

Facts

Form of Government
Republic
Chief of State and Head of Government is the President
President is elected by popular vote for a five-year term

Government structure
Chief of State/Head of Government
Cabinet; appointed by the President from elected legislators
Unicameral National Assembly

Military Statistics
Manpower fit for service: Male - 6,532,894, Female - 6,352,416
Expenditures: 2.2% of GDP
Branches: Uganda Peoples Defence Force (UPDF), Army (includes Marine Unit) and Air Force

Former Rulers
1963 – 1966 Sir Edward Frederick William David Walugembe Mutebi Luwangula Mutesa II
1966 -1971 Milton Obote
1971 – 1979 Idi Amin Dada
1979 Prof. Yusuf Kironde Lule
1979 – 1980 Godfrey Lukongwa Binaisa
1980 Paulo Muwanga (Chairman of the Military Commission)
1980 Presidential Commission of Uganda (comprised; Saulo Musoke, Polycarp Nyamuchoncho and Yoweri Hunter Wacha-Olwol)
1980 – 1985 Milton Obote
1985 Brigadier General Basilio Olara Okello (Chairman of the Military Council)
1985 – 1986 General Tito Okello (Chairman of the Military Council)
1986 – Present General Yoweri Kaguta Museveni


Capital
Kampala
Altitude: 1222 metres
Population: 1.353 million people

Population
Size: 32,939,800 (2011)
Life Expectancy: 52.7 years
Gender Make-up: Female – 49.9%, Male – 50.1%

GDP per capita

$1,354 (2011)

$1,275 (2010)

Geography
Area: 241,038sqkm
Land boundaries: Democratic Republic of the Congo 765km, Kenya 933km, Rwanda 169km, Sudan 435km, Tanzania 396km

Major Languages

English (official), Kiswahili (official), Luganda, Various Bantu and Nilotic languages

Religious portfolio
Roman Catholic 41.9%, Protestant 42% (Anglican 35.9%, Pentecostal 4.6%, Seventh Day Adventist 1.5%), Muslim 12.1%, other 3.1%, none 0.9%

National Make-up
Baganda 16.9%, Banyakole 9.5%, Basoga 8.4%, Bakiga 6.9%, Iteso 6.4%, Langi 6.1%, Acholi 4.7%, Bagisu 4.6%, Lugbara 4.2%, Bunyoro 2.7%, other 29.6%

Natural Resources
Copper, Cobalt, Hydropower, Limestone, Salt, Arable land, Oil

Main exports
Coffee, Fish and fish products, Tea, Tobacco, Cotton, Corn, Beans, Sesame

Land Use
Arable land: 21.57%
Permanent crops: 8.92%
Other: 69.51%

Monetary Unit/Currency
Ugandan Shillings

Dialling Code
+256

Internet Code
.ug

Transport
Main port: n/a
Airport: Entebbe International Airport, located 40km from Kampala

Modern issues

Environmental
Draining of wetlands for agricultural use
Deforestation
Overgrazing
Soil erosion
Water hyacinth infestation in Lake Victoria
Widespread poaching

Political
Mr. Museveni was re-elected again in 2011. His 25 years in power were extended when Uganda's Electoral Commission announced in February that he won the presidential election by 68.38 percent of the vote in the polls, the opposition described the elections as a "sham."

2011 was a year under which Museveni also came under severe scrutiny over graft allegations. Mr. Museveni dismissed as "absolute rubbish" allegations that he received personal payments from Italian oil firm ENI in return for oil exploration rights

The Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) was pushed out of Uganda in 2008 with support from the US, Congo and Sudan and a ceasefire was signed in 2008 between the LRA and the government
There are tensions between King Ronald Muwenda Mutebi II and the Ugandan Government since he has a large influence among the Baganda people, who want his formal political power to be restored after he was constitutionally barred from taking part in politics

Economic
Uganda has substantial natural resources, including fertile soils, regular rainfall, small deposits of copper, gold, and other minerals, and recently discovered oil

Uganda has suffered from a decrease in its export industry – particularly for coffee
The IMF has reported that there will be a slow-down in the economy in 2009/2010 due to the region’s security problems and the effects of the global economic downturn

Social
2011 shall be remembered as the year Uganda became marked by an atmosphere of constant public discontent. Most notable mention goes to the “Walk-to-work protests” which were anti-government protests led by the Activists for Change. They were made popular by opposition leader Kizza Besigye earlier in the year as a way to press against the rising cost of living but turned violent.

Idi Amin’s rule brought about huge levels of human rights abuses, the number of people killed by his regime will never truly be known
Uganda has made the most effective national response to the HIV and Aids epidemic in Africa. Along with Botswana, it is leading the way in rolling out anti-retroviral treatment
The LRA has perpetuated massacres and abducted thousands of children from Uganda and used them as child soldiers and sex slaves – predominantly in the north of the country

Foreign Affairs
The radical Somalian Islamic group, al-Shabaab, have threatened Kampala since there are Ugandan peacekeepers in Mogadishu – President Museveni rebutted the threat and Uganda continues to have a leading role in Somalia peacekeeping, vowing to defeat Islamist al-Shabaab rebels
There is a dispute between Uganda and Kenya over the Migingo Island in Lake Victoria as it is claimed to be a commercially valuable fishing ground, although some reports claim that it is a secret station for contraband
Uganda has had an active role in DRC’s conflict and there have been conflicts between the two nations due to mutual accusations of support for dissidents

The Major Conflicts

Overthrow of the Kingdom
When: 1966
Who: Milton Obote VS Mutesa’s Buganda Kingdom
Why: Obote wanted a central state with more presidential powers
Outcome: Obote conducted an armed attack on Mutesa’s palace and sent the King into exile in Britain. Obote then produced a new constitution which abolished all of Uganda’s traditional kingdoms

Amin’s Military Coup
When: 1971
Who: Armed forces under Idi Amin Dada VS Obote’s government
Why: Amin wanted control of the state
Outcome: Obote’s government was overthrown and Amin dissolved parliament and declared himself president

Uganda – Tanzania War
When: 1978-1979
Who: Uganda (under Amin) VS Tanzania (under Nyerere)
Why: Amin attempted to annex the Kagera region in Tanzania
Outcome: Tanzanian forces repelled an incursion of Ugandan forces on Tanzanian territory, supported by Ugandan exiles, the Tanzanian forces waged a war of liberation against Amin and won despite Libyan troops were reinforcing Amin’s troops. Kampala was captured and Amin fled

Coup of 1985
When: 1985
Who: Milton Obote’s elected government VS Army brigade under Gen. Tito Okello and Lt. Gen. Basilio Olara-Okello
Why: There was resistance to the idea that Obote had won the elections fairly, which had led to rebellions and the eventual military coup that ousted Obote’s government
Outcome: Obote fled to Namibia. Lt. Gen. Basilio Olara-Okello and General Tito Okello took control of the country. However, several months later, Yoweri Museveni and the National Resistance Army (NRA), who had been at the forefront of the rebellions, took control

Rebellion by the Lord’s Resistance Army
When: 1987 - Ongoing
Who: Joseph Kony (LRA) VS President Yoweri Museveni’s Government
Why: Kony believes he was meant to rule the country and was able to tap into the grievances of the Acholi people in northern Uganda (whom they eventually turned on)
Outcome: Efforts to suppress the LRA and Kony have to this date been unsuccessful. The group is considered a terrorist organisation by the US

What to see?
Ruwenzori Mountains - known as the 'Mountains of the Moon': Located on the Uganda/Democratic Republic of the Congo border - they include several peaks that are permanently covered in snow, which is rare in Africa

Sports
Popular Sports
Wrestling
Football
Cricket
Tennis
Athletics

Golf
Sailing
Boxing

Famous sportsmen and sportswomen
Dorcas Inzikuru: Winner of inaugural world women’s 3000m steeplechase title in Helsinki, Finland
Justin Juuko: Won a Commonwealth super-featherweight boxing title.

Quirks
It is more usual to sit outside rather than inside when visiting a bar in Uganda – this is due to the history of violent regimes where people wanted to ensure that their apprehension would be easily recognised and communicated