The Africa Institute for Energy Governance (AFIEGO) has said that despite community efforts to plant trees, deforestation continued on the disputed parts of Bugoma Central Forest Reserve in Kikuube District in 2023.
In the January 2024 Newsletter that carried AFIEGO’s 2023 achievements and shortfalls, it highlights that the struggle to save Bugoma forest must be taken seriously inside the year 2024.
According to Kazi-njema radio reporter assigned to summarise the newsletter, theorganisation said that it had done all it could to support the Save Bugoma Forest Campaign Local Taskforce to engage in advocacy to promote the conservation of the woodland but little success was registered.
In the same publication, AFIEGO supported the production of more than five research reports, factsheets or briefs that were disseminated to nearly half a million stakeholders.
The reports were aimed at showcasing how poor countries like Uganda can promote a just energy transition, the protection of communities’ rights, environmental conservation and climate action among others.
In regard to policy influence the publication shows that AFIEGO together with its partners engaged in advocacy to promote the enactment of over three policies and laws by the Ugandan government in 2023.
It further states that they engaged in advocacy or made proposals for a Solar Energy Policy, Consumer Protection and Management Bill and an Energy Transition Policy. The Ugandan government put in place an Energy Transition Plan in 2023 which AFIEGO looks at as a major milestone.
Additionally, it reports to have held over 36 community engagements to empower communities from over 15 districts in Uganda to defend their rights amidst oil exploitation activities.
The communities created two platforms, the EACOP-affected people’s Network and Buliisa Patience Alliance, through which they engaged in impactful advocacy, Newsletter indicates.
On litigation AFIEGO reports to have litigated ten court cases in Uganda, East African and French courts of law. The court cases were aimed at protecting the human rights of oil-affected communities, promoting compliance with Ugandan and East African environmental laws, promoting a conducive civic space in Uganda and promoting climate action among others.
AFIEGO is one of the most vibrant CSOs in East Africa in relation to environmental and human rights activism.