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Cablegate: Northern Uganda Notes (March 1-April 18, 2008)

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RR RUEHGI RUEHRN RUEHROV
DE RUEHKM #0552/01 1130720
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 220720Z APR 08
FM AMEMBASSY KAMPALA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 0240
INFO RUEHKH/AMEMBASSY KHARTOUM 0709
RUCNIAD/IGAD COLLECTIVE
RUEHXR/RWANDA COLLECTIVE
RUEHGI/AMEMBASSY BANGUI 0007
RUEHTO/AMEMBASSY MAPUTO 0484
RUEHSA/AMEMBASSY PRETORIA 3450
RHMFIUU/CJTF HOA

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 03 KAMPALA 000552

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE

SIPDIS

DEPARTMENT PASS TO USAID AND OFDA

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PHUM PREF ASEC EAID UG SU CG

SUBJECT: NORTHERN UGANDA NOTES (March 1-April 18, 2008)

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1. (U) Summary: The following Northern Uganda Notes provide
information on the situation on the ground and USG activities aimed
at meeting Mission's objectives in northern Uganda. These
objectives include promoting regional stability through peace and
security, good governance, access to social services, economic
growth, and humanitarian assistance. Post appreciates feedback from
consumers on the utility of this product and any gaps in information
that need to be filled. End Summary.

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PEACE AND RECONCILIATION PROCESSES
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2. (U) The date for the signature of the Final Peace Agreement
(FPA) slipped through March into April. The LRA delegation held a
consultation with northern Ugandan leaders in Juba on March 26 and
27. The Government and LRA agreed to extend the Cessation of
Hostilities Agreement to April 6 and then to April 15. The
Government has not decided on whether it will renew the CHA.

3. (U) Ruhakana Rugunda, the leader of the Government's negotiating
team, told Parliament that Kony did not show up at Rikwangba on
April 10. Kony reportedly said that he was not expecting to sign an
agreement and thought that he was meeting traditional and religious
leaders to discuss the peace process. Kony reportedly wanted to
know what procedures (mato oput) and institutions (Special Division
of the High Court) were envisaged. Rugunda said that there was
in-fighting within the LRA delegation, which may have contributed to
conflicting reports reaching Kony. David Matsanga was removed as
leader of the LRA delegation. Rugunda noted that Matsanga said he
resigned and was not sacked.

4. (SBU) The GOU left Rikwangba on April 11 when it was clear that
Kony was a few days walk from the venue. The GOU agreed with the
Government of Southern Sudan mediator Riek Machar that the GOU would
return to Kampala while Machar and religious and traditional leaders
tried to make contact with Kony.

5. (SBU) Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni visited Juba on April 14
and reviewed the peace process with the Government of Southern
Sudan's President, Salva Kiir. Rugunda told Parliament that the GOU
was waiting for reports from Machar and the U.N. Special Envoy for
LRA-Affected Areas Chissano, who was scheduled to brief the UNSC on
April 28.

6. (SBU) Minister of State for International Relations Henry Okello
Oryem updated the Partners for Democracy and Governance (PDG)
meeting on April 16. He explained that the GOU delegation left
Rikwangba on April 11 after receiving information that Kony was 70
kilometers from the venue. He said that it was not helpful to have
between 100-200 people at Rikwangba, which became a rumor mill. The
GOU advised the Acholi religious and elected leaders to make direct
contact with Kony because without it, no progress would be made.
Kony needed time to consider his position. Oryem warned against
spoilers from the diaspora. Oryem advised that the situation
required patience in order not to undermine the stability and
economic progress being made in northern Uganda.

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HUMANITARIAN ASSISTANCE AND ECONOMIC RECOVERY
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7. (U) UNICEF reports that by late-2007, 54 percent of the 1.8
million internally displaced persons (IDPs) had entered the return
process, including half a million people settling permanently in
their villages of origin and approximately 400,000 having made the
initial movement out of the camps into transit sites. The majority
of the IDPs in Apac, Amolatar, Dokolo, Lira, and Oyam Districts have
returned to their homes of origin. In the Acholi sub-region (Amuru,
Gulu, Kitgum, and Pader Districts), 35 percent of the remaining IDPs
are expected to complete their return in 2008 with 45 percent in
transit.

8. (U) The Government held a Planning and Consultative Workshop on
the Peace, Recovery, and Development Plan (PRDP) in Kampala on March
13-14. District-level officials, civil society groups, donors,
private sector organizations, and the development partners came
together for the first time to discuss PRDP programs, Government
financing, and monitoring mechanisms. The workshop helped to
develop a common understanding of the PRDP among all stakeholders
and implementing agencies. A PRDP annex will be added to the

KAMPALA 00000552 002.2 OF 003


national budget request for the fiscal year beginning on July 1,
2008.

9. (SBU) USG Activities: USAID Administrator Henrietta Fore and
Assistant Administrator for Africa Kate Almquist visited Uganda from
March 12 to 15 and saw the transition from emergency relief to
recovery in northern Uganda. Administrator Fore's delegation
discussed the challenges of recovery and reconstruction in northern
Uganda with the Principal Judge of the High Court, James Ogoola;
district level officials from Gulu, Abim, Lira, and Pader; and
Acholi traditional and religious leaders. A visit to Te-Tugu IDP
camp showcases USAID's work on HIV/AIDS, malaria, and education.

10. (SBU) Deputy Assistant Administrator for USAID's Democracy,
Conflict, and Humanitarian Assistance Bureau, Elisabeth Kviatshvili
and Cynthia Brady of USAID's Conflict Management and Mitigation
Office visited Uganda from February 24 to March 4. They visited
several USAID activities and communities in northern Uganda to
better understand the transition the IDPs were making from camps to
home villages and determine appropriate interventions to support
peace, reconciliation, and development.

11. (SBU) The Stability, Peace, and Reconciliation in Northern
Uganda (SPRING) project started the first phase of its
implementation on February 25. In March, SPRING teams began meeting
with district officials, civil society groups, and development
partners in the LRA-affected areas of the north.

12. (SBU) USAID's Office of Transition Initiatives (OTI) will
implement a program to support media development and strengthen
local government to increase the quality and quantity of information
reaching northern residents about the peace process and the PRDP.
Other program components will support the construction of a service
delivery infrastructure in the north.

13. (U) The President's Malaria Initiative Indoor Residual Spraying
(IRS) program in Gulu District reached 92 percent of the houses
(9,220 out of 10,025) and provided protection for 28,341 individuals
from mosquito bites. Insecticide treated nets are being used by
48.3 percent of the children under five years of age.

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SECURITY UPDATE
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14. (U) LRA movements from Garamba National Park in the Democratic
Republic of Congo (DRC) to Central African Republic, sometimes
through southern Sudan resulted in numerous reports of abductions
and lootings. The U.N. Mission to DRC (MONUC) reports that the LRA
abducted over 200 people in DRC in February and March. The U.S
Ambassador to CAR traveled to Obo to meet with villagers and
individuals abducted by the LRA. They said that the LRA abducted
157 people.

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FROM THE MEDIA AND THE WEB
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15. (U) Various press statements indicate divisions with the LRA
and among its supporters in the diaspora. On April 10, a press
statement claimed that Alex Oloya and Bill Okema were now speaking
for Kony. On April 17, The Daily Monitor reported that Dr. James
Obita had been named the new spokesman for Kony. David Mastanga
disputed Obita's appointment and said that he had been named the
Chief Advisor to the new consultative team headed by Oloya. Another
individual, Obonyo Olweny also could be named.

16. (U) Matsanga issued a press statement on April 15 alleging that
internal divisions within the LRA, greed, and bad advice led to the
failure of Kony to sign the FPA. Matsanga alleges that Kony killed
his deputy, Major General Okot Odhiambo and Major General Ceasar
Acellam. (Note: These reports are likely false. End Note.)
Matsanga stated the Kony killed his previous deputy Vincent Otti
because he was involved in an arms deal with a South African and
that funds given to Otti never reached Kony. He claimed that
disputes over money and tribalism created divisions within the LRA
negotiating team.

17. (U) Resolve Uganda issued a press release entitled "With
Caution and Creativity, Hope Remains For Imminent End to Uganda's
22-Year War" on April 14. According to Resolve Uganda's Research

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Director, Peter Quaranto, "it seems likely that Kony was
apprehensive about signing an agreement without clearer guarantees
for his own personal security." Quaranto recommended that
"sustained international involvement and outside-the-box creative
thinking is needed to keep dialoguing directly with Kony and induce
him to come out of the bush. Given the volatile region and risks
for escalated violence, renewed military operations by the Ugandan
army must remain a last resort. "Ultimately, peace in northern
Uganda doesn't have to depend on the actions of Joseph Kony. If the
Ugandan government pledges to uphold the commitments it made during
the negotiations process to help redevelop war-affected areas and
make amends for the crimes committee during the war, peace can still
be achieved."

18. (U) Michael Poffenberger, Resolve Uganda's Executive Director
stated that "we can't lose sight of the fact that this peace
agreement is also about restoring the Ugandan government's
relationship with the people of northern Uganda who have endured the
brutal consequences of this war."

BROWNING

HHIHI

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