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Cablegate: Uganda: Roundup On Mccormick-Powell Visit

VZCZCXYZ0014
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHKM #0399/01 0661105
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 071105Z MAR 07
FM AMEMBASSY KAMPALA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 8372
INFO RUEHC/DEPT OF LABOR WASHDC
RUEHGV/USMISSION GENEVA 0909

UNCLAS KAMPALA 000399

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

DEPARTMENT PASS TO USTR BILL JACKSON

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: ETRD EINV EFIN EAID PGOV PHUM PREF UG
SUBJECT: UGANDA: ROUNDUP ON MCCORMICK-POWELL VISIT

1. Summary: David McCormick, Deputy National Security Advisor for
International Economic Affairs and Dina Powell, Assistant Secretary
for Educational and Cultural Affairs led a delegation through Uganda
from March 2-5. The delegation came to observe the impact of foreign
assistance and public diplomacy efforts, with a focus on
public-private partnerships, African Growth and Opportunity Act and
President Bush's Emergency Plans for AIDS relief (PEPFAR) and
Malaria (PMI). The delegation visited several USAID assistance
programs and met with key partners including World Vision, Invisible
Children, Dunavant and the UN's World Food Program. End Summary.

--------------------------------------------- ---
PEPFAR and Other Humanitarian Foreign Assistance
--------------------------------------------- ---

2. The delegation visited The Aids Support Organization (TASO)
center in Entebbe, one of eleven satellite HIV/AIDS care and
treatment centers that serve 54,000 HIV-positive patients throughout
the county. In 2004, TASO was allocated initial PEPFAR funds to
expand their care and counseling services to include the provision
of anti-retroviral treatment (ART), using the innovative strategy of
distributing ART by motorcycle to clients' homes. The delegation
rode with a motorcycle convoy to a home to see this approach and
learn about the products and services that are now able to reach
these rural populations.

3. The delegation witnessed a World Food Program (WFP) food
distribution and visited USAID PMI program. Koch Ongako Camp is one
of 63 WFP assisted camps in Gulu district and has a population of
7,870 internally displaced persons (IDPs). Representatives from WFP
stressed the difficulty for IDPs to feel safe without an official
statement from President Museveni assuring them it is safe to return
to their home villages. For WFP, this complicates planning for the
transition between relief and development programs. However, many
families have commenced agricultural production on their home land
or around the camp, and return to the IDP camp only to supplement
their food supplies and receive social services. The WFP currently
provides 60 percent of the food consumed in the camp, and hopes to
reduce that percentage as people resettle.

4. The village leaders of the IDP camp had the opportunity to
express their anxiety over the slow peace process and their fear
that assistance would diminish as the initial crisis is resolved.
They requested further assistance with food, health and education,
at least through the initial phase of resettlement. A/S Powell
assured the village leaders that assistance will continue even after
resettlement, including through additional funds for new HIV/AIDS,
PMI and Tuberculosis programs. Uganda's USAID Deputy Director
promised that the camp would be among many camps to receive
assistance for new education and agriculture programs, but warned
that these initiatives will take time to be established and become
effective.

5. The delegation visited St. Mary Hospital Lacor, the leading
hospital in northern Uganda. With funding from PEPFAR to the AIDS
Relief program, the Lacor ARV treatment program was initiated in
October 2004. Currently, 1,600 patients are provided with ARVs, of
which 150 are children. 7,200 HIV positive clients receive
comprehensive care. From 2003 to 2006, the U.S. Government provided
support to Action Against Hunger for supplementary and therapeutic
feeding programs for severely mal-nourished children through USAID's
Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance.

6. A/S Powell visited the Joint Clinical Research Center (JCRC),
the premier African antiretroviral research and service delivery
center, to provide an overview of USG support for using JCRC as a
model for AIDS treatment in Uganda and throughout Africa. A/S
Powell also met with dozens of children being served by the Meeting
Point, a renowned orphanage and service provider that refers clients
to JCRC for medical care.

-----------------------
Humanitarian Assistance
-----------------------

7. The delegation toured the World Vision Children of War
Rehabilitation Center where they were briefed on reintegration and
rehabilitation efforts for ex-combatants and child-mothers who had
been abducted by the LRA. At one time, the center housed up to 400
children, but due to the improved security situation, only 3 young
adult males were there. Since 1995, the center has supported over
10,000 children and adults affected by the LRA conflict with
financial assistance provided by USAID. Two ex-combatants who
escaped the LRA after hearing the GOU sponsored radio announcements,
recounted their abduction, the horrors of life in the LRA, and how
the center helped them reintegrate into society. A/S Powell praised
the World Vision for its efforts in assisting former fighters whom
had the courage to flee from the LRA.

8. The delegation also had the opportunity to see the dwindling
number of "night commuters," children who once walked several
kilometers to sleep in the safety of town each evening to avoid
abduction by the LRA. At the height of the conflict in June 2004,
this facility housed 10,000 children per night. Now that the
security situation has improved significantly around Gulu, the
facility hosts only 55-75 children the majority of who come for
social services rather than safety.

9. The delegation met with representatives of the NGO Invisible
Children at Gulu high school to witness the implemention of their
Schools for Schools program, which encourages schools in the U.S.
and around the world to donate money on a project-by-project basis
to several schools in Gulu district. During the years of LRA
conflict, the facilities at Gulu high school were looted several
times and many students were abducted. The Schools for Schools
program has raised enough money for Gulu high school to have a new
science laboratory and a girl's dormitory. Invisible Children has
raised enough money to sponsor 540 (64 percent girls) of the 1,400
students at Gulu. Sponsorship includes tuition and much needed
counseling for traumatized students.

-------------------------------------
Public/Private Partnerships and Trade
-------------------------------------

10. The delegation flew to Kitgum district, to see a cotton gin run
by Dunavant. Dunavant, based in Memphis, Tennessee is the world's
largest cotton purchaser. The gin has been operating since 2002 and
Dunavant signed a Global Development Alliance agreement with USAID
to double the production of organic cotton in the area as well as
food crops. Two thousand nine hundred farm families have self
organized into "producer organizations". Once a group is able to
bring together a contiguous parcel of 50 acres or more, they are
eligible to participate in the project. Dunavant and USAID
anticipate 12,500 resettled farm families will benefit from the
initiative. Northern Uganda is a historic cotton producing area and
with this new partnership, they will be able to participate in the
growing global demand for organic cotton products.

11. David McCormick and Mike Magan visited Phenix Logistics, which
made its first major shipment of apparel to the U.S. market under
the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) on February 23. An
export of 50,000 organic t-shirts, valued at about USD 125,000
represented the first 100 percent Ugandan made organic cotton
apparel.

12. Uganda was recently named the African lead for the next round
of World Trade Organization talks. Mr. McCormick discussed Uganda's
role in the talks with Minister of Energy, Daudi Migereko who is the
former Minister of Trade, Tourism and Industry. Migereko praised
President Bush for bringing enthusiasm to the upcoming trade talks
and said he was encouraged by U.S. efforts to expand trade
opportunities for Africa. Migereko added that Uganda, like most of
Africa, needs to focus on trade capacity building and looks to the
United States to assist in "aid for trade" options.

----------------
Public Diplomacy
----------------

13. During the visit, A/S Powell announced the selection of Uganda
to be included in this year's State Department Youth Leadership
Program. The program will bring 10 students and teachers in Uganda
to the U.S. to learn about the importance of free press and free
expression in the development of democracies throughout the world.
This program will be among the many exchange programs between the US
and Uganda, including the Fulbright Program and the International
Visitor Leadership program. Following the announcement, A/S Powell
participated in three media interviews with Wavah Broadcasting
Service (WBS), Monitor and Uganda Radio Network.
BROWNING

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