Funder: Indigo Trust UK
Uganda has 19.7 % of its people living below the poverty line (earn less than a dollar a day) with 44% of the chronically poor households living in northern Uganda and 54.1% of the 37 million Ugandans are below 18 years of age (UBOS 2017). A total of 23% of male and 42.3% of female are illiterate and 80% live in rural areas. These are people whose lives are directly affected by the decisions made by the political elites at all levels of governance. Yet this section of the Ugandan population has very little access to information on the performance of their leaders. Information about service delivery and accountability is in control of the district political and civil service leaders which breed an environment in which rural populations treat the provision of services as a gift or favor from their leaders/governments. Majority of the rural are left out of decision making and are not able to hold a meaningful debate on improving service delivery.
ICTs as tools for development, enhances communication, advocacy and awareness creation on improving service delivery. WOUGNET innovatively uses the already existing synergies of ICTs in monitoring, engagement and reporting poor service delivery to improve use of ICTs to create deeper engagement between the community and the duty bearers for greater results. WOUGNET works with community monitors here referred as VSACs and duty bearers who are referred to as leaders to improve service delivery in the target districts. The Indigo Trust project focused on public services like health, education, water and sanitation, roads and infrastructure development and agriculture.
The project objectives are;
- An existing SMS platform called “m-Omulimisa” adapted and integrated with Ushahidi to strengthen community engagement with duty bearers in addressing poor service delivery issues.
- Use of online media for advocacy and civic engagement strengthened.
Voices of the grassroots communities on corruption and poor service delivery using ICTs for wider coverage documented and disseminated.
Funder: Women of Uganda Network (WOUGNET)
Women of Uganda Network (WOUGNET) under the Gender and ICT Policy Advocacy Program has been engaging in advocating for Gender sensitive ICT Policies and Programs since 2006. The advocacy was undertaken through the caucus named Uganda Women Caucus on ICT Policy (UWCI). To expand the network and bring more members on board who were not WOUGNET’s members, the caucus was rebranded to become the Women ICT Advocacy Group (WIAG). WIAG is housed at WOUGNET secretariat and spearheaded by the organization aimed at engendering ICT policy process in Uganda. The main goal is to advocate for Internet Access for all in Uganda. It is a coalition of organizations and individuals interested in gender and ICT issues. To strengthen the skills of other gender activists, WIAG highlights the main issues during meetings with policy makers and promotes the need to integrate gender into ICT policies. The caucus comprised of WOUGNET members and Interested partners.
- Advocacy under taken include research, studies, analysis and advocacy of issues in the areas of e-governance, internet access, women rights online and ending gender-based violence
Funder: UN Women Fund for Gender Equality
Scope: Uganda and South Africa
In partnership with APC and Women’s Net, South Africa, WOUGNET this year embarked on the second phase of this project. The overall goal of this project is to increase women's decision making and influence in internet governance and ICT policies for the realization of women's rights in Uganda and Africa as a whole. It is hoped that the project activities will help increase the capacity of women in South Africa and Uganda to discuss, analyze, respond to and influence policy on gender and internet governance more effectively.
The project is in its second phase with activities carried out including;
Evidence based research to build on the Understanding of the Intersections between women’s rights and Internet Governance - This activity was done over the period August to September 2016 and it involved hiring of a consultant to undertake the evidence based research to bring to light the state and intersections of women’s rights and internet governance in Uganda.
More information and analysis on how internet governance affects women’s rights in Uganda is available - A number of articles were published on the WOUGNET website and posted on our Facebook and twitter pages by WOUGNET project staff and organizations that we partner with in various projects around gender, feminism and internet Governance issues including; - CIPESA, AMWA, Women’s Net and APC. On our WOUGNET website some of the following articles were published in the stated project period.
Local level conversations using the Feminist Principles on the Internet - This activity took place on 16 November 2016 and attracted over 35 participants drawn from diverse WOUGNET stakeholders and partners. Out of the 35 participants targeted, 22, represented their own institutions and 5 were drawn from WOUGNET online activists due to their online activism and potential to contribute to the Internet Governance (IG) discussions. 8 Participants were representatives from University and institutions who WOUGNET thought are critical in advancing the Feminists Principles on the Internet (FPI) within the student communities.
National Awareness Raising workshop on women’s rights and technology - The purpose of the Campaign was to raise awareness and generate conversation on GBV, particularly on online violence against women. The activity was to coincide with the annual UNWomen awareness campaign dubbed #16 Days of Activism against GBV. It was also meant to raise issues on the current state of Internet Governance and ICT Policy in Uganda while highlighting their implications for women and girls online as well as offline.
Gender and Internet Governance Exchange (Gigx,) Africa School on internet governance (AfriSIG) & Africa Internet Governance (AFIG) - A joint national Gender and Internet Governance Exchange (GigX) that took place on 10th October 2016 in Durban, South Africa in a build up towards the African School of Internet Governance (AfriSIG) (11 – 15 October) and the African Internet Governance Forum (AfIGF) (16-19 October)
- Activities to be carried out in the Second Phase of the project include; online publications, online discussions using the FPIs, national Gigx, Local level conversation using FPIs and a National awareness raising campaign.
Funder: Women of Uganda Network (WOUGNET)
Today Information Communication Technologies (ICTs) is almost being used in all aspects of lives. The technology expanded into banking, shopping, education, health care, social networking, water, electricity, flight bookings, security, transport and commerce. According to International Telecommunication Union (ITU), with the growing application and dependency on ICTS, the risks in terms of phishing attacks, compromised credentials, and human error-induced breaches, poorly managed smart gadgets and mobile devices are growing and this requires all stakeholders to have adequate capacity and knowledge to take appropriate actions.
In Uganda, technology gender-based violence has taken a surge with the notable case being the one of Doctor Stella Nyanzi, a senior lecturer at Makerere University who was arrested in 2017 and remanded at Luzira Prison for calling President Museveni pairs of buttocks and penalised for committing an offense according to section 24 and 25 of the Computer Misuse Act of 2011.
In addition, Uganda police cyber security report of 2017, indicated that 95 percent of cyber crimes cases and threats go un reported and only 4.4 percent cases were followed up and addressed to some extent because of limited experts and tools to be used. This is inline with the research report of Seriani Cyber threat Intelligence research team from Kenya whose reports indicate that most organisations in Uganda are ill equipped to deal with cyber threats.
WOUGNET assesses capacity of University students in Uganda and tries to train more experts especially young women who join these organisations after studies as employees. As well creating awareness on the extent of digital security in Uganda to ensure that women and women rights organisations are safe when they go online and browse the internet. This effort requires multi-sectoral and international collaboration to ensure that the strategy, technical, legal and policy space is strengthened to be able to address the security matters of the Country.
- The current and future digital security challenges faced by women and women rights organizations in Uganda assessed to reduce vulnerability and unabated losses.
- Inclusion and online safety of women and women rights organizations promoted through capacity building to reduce attacks and fostering collaborations between the ICTs management and the policy makers in Uganda.
- Awareness on technology related violence against women and applicable laws and policies in Uganda raised.