Uganda

The colonial boundaries created by Britain to delimit Uganda grouped together a wide range of ethnic groups with different political systems and cultures. These differences prevented the establishment of a working political community after independence was achieved in 1962. The dictatorial regime of Idi AMIN (1971-79) was responsible for the deaths of some 300,000 opponents; guerrilla war and human rights abuses under Milton OBOTE (1980-85) claimed at least another 100,000 lives. The rule of Yoweri MUSEVENI since 1986 has brought relative stability and economic growth to Uganda. During the 1990s, the government promulgated non-party presidential and legislative elections.

 

Geography:
Location: Eastern Africa, west of Kenya
Geographic coordinates: 1 00 N, 32 00 E
People:
Population:  33,640,833 (July 2012 est.)

note: estimates for this country explicitly take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS; this can result in lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality, higher death rates, lower population growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected

Age structure: 0-14 years: 49.9% (male 8,692,239/female 8,564,571)

15-64 years: 48.1% (male 8,383,548/female 8,255,473)

65 years and over: 2.1% (male 291,602/female 424,817) (2011 est.)

Government:
Country name: conventional long form: Republic of Uganda

conventional short form: Uganda

Government type: republic
Communications:
Telephones – main lines in use: 327,100 (2009)
Telephones – mobile cellular: 12.828 million (2009)
Transportation:
Airports: 46 (2012)
Airports – with paved runways: total: 5

over 3,047 m: 3

1,524 to 2,437 m: 1

914 to 1,523 m: 1 (2012)

Military:
Military branches: Uganda Peoples Defence Force (UPDF): Army (includes Marine Unit), Air Force (2010)
Military service age and obligation: 18-26 years of age for voluntary military duty; 18-30 years of age for professionals; no conscription; 9-year service obligation; the government has stated that recruitment under 18 years of age could occur with proper consent and that “no person under the apparent age of 13 years shall be enrolled in the armed forces”; Ugandan citizenship and secondary education required (2010)

Economy:

Uganda has substantial natural resources, including fertile soils, regular rainfall, and sizable mineral deposits of copper, cobalt, gold, and other minerals. Agriculture is the most important sector of the economy, employing over 80% of the work force. Coffee accounts for the bulk of export revenues. Since 1986, the government – with the support of foreign countries and international agencies – has acted to rehabilitate and stabilize the economy by undertaking currency reform, raising producer prices on export crops, increasing prices of petroleum products, and improving civil service wages.

 

The policy changes are especially aimed at dampening inflation and boosting production and export earnings. During 1990-2001, the economy turned in a solid performance based on continued investment in the rehabilitation of infrastructure, improved incentives for production and exports, reduced inflation, gradually improved domestic security, and the return of exiled Indian-Ugandan entrepreneurs.

Transnational Issues:

Uganda is subject to armed fighting among hostile ethnic groups, rebels, armed gangs, militias, and various government forces that extend across its borders; Uganda hosts 209,860 Sudanese, 27,560 Congolese, and 19,710 Rwandan refugees, while Ugandan refugees as well as members of the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) seek shelter in southern Sudan and the Democratic Republic of the Congo’s Garamba National Park; LRA forces have also attacked Kenyan villages across the border.

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