By Nancy Emily Nagujja
The Uganda Bureau of Statistics (UBOS), together with the Government of Uganda and the United Nations Development Uganda launched its Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) Report at the Kampala Serena Hotel.
Hon Amos Lugoloobi, State Minister for Finance Planning and Economic Development applauded The Uganda Bureau of Statistics for producing this first Multidimensional Poverty Index Report for Uganda saying this particular report is based on the Uganda National Household Survey series which provides statistical indicators underpinning the socio-economic characteristics at both household and community levels which are essential for monitoring development performance of key indicators in the various sectors. To this end, I also thank Economic Policy Research Center (EPRC), National Planning Authority (NPA), the Ministry of Finance Planning and Economic Development (Mofped), the Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative (OPHI) and UNDP for the technical and financial support they extended in making sure this report is produced,” He said.
Ms. Elsie Attafuah, Resident Representative of the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) in her remarks highlighted the important accelerators for structural transformation in Uganda like Industrialization, Intra-Africa Trade Tourism, Clean Energy, promoting private sector development and implementation of the Parish Development Model. She emphasized the need to look beyond income criteria in assessing poverty or development progress. She called upon the Government to utilize the findings of the MPI Report to effectively target and design appropriate interventions.
At the launch, Mr. Chris .N. Mukiza, the Executive Director of The Uganda Bureau of Statistics in his remarks he highlighted that this is the very first ever Multidimensional Report Index Report for Uganda. It is an impartial, independent and comprehensive report that spells out the various dimensions under which poverty can be measured. Some of these dimensions include access to social services such as education, health, safe water and clean energy in addition to such welfare indicators like housing conditions, consumption patterns and income among others.
“The Report is a benchmark for tracking progress in multiple deprivations that Ugandans may experience in the coming years, and this is in line with Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 1 that emphasizes Ending Poverty in all forms everywhere. Over the years there has been an entirely independent decision and steady process by the Government of Uganda to end household poverty with an intention of transforming the livelihood of every Ugandan from subsistence to the money economy,” He said.
The current Government program of The Parish Development Model is one of such progressive initiatives that is highly anticipated to create a remarkable transformation of Uganda, we the citizens must commit to move together and embrace all the necessary support required for success of such Government programs. The success of PDM is entirely dependent on the quality of baseline information. This explains the reason as to why during the month of June and July, the Bureau has been involved in collecting data with support from the Ministry of ICT and National Guidance together with the Ministry of Local Government. The process is still ongoing and the Bureau hopes to avail quality statistics that can be used to implement and effectively monitor PDM activities.
Mr. Moses Kaggwa Director Economic Affairs at the Ministry of Planning and Economic Development representing Dr. Ramathan Ggoobi, the Permanent Secretary for the ministry passed on his remarks, he noted that the MPI complements the traditional monetary poverty measures by capturing the acute deprivations that people face beyond income. These indicators act as a torch by giving us pointers on where we need to refocus our efforts. The Ministry of Finance Planning and Economic Development has consistently supported the budget processes geared towards reducing household poverty and all its dimensions. The Multidimensional Poverty Index relies on the National Household series, it gives an opportunity to further scrutinize the multi-faceted aspects of poverty and how we can deal with them.
Mr. Vicent Senono Principal Statistician says that Poverty requires multidimensional poverty measures because it consists of many interlocked dimensions. The process of the development of the dimensions and indicators includes: formation of the core team headed by UBOS, discussions with MDAs, academicians and civil society organizations, regional consultations that included local governments, religious leaders, discussions and advice from OPHI and finalization by the core team. “Some of the purposes of the MPI measure include; the indicators that have been selected in order to provide a cleared way of designing programs that deliberately target the poor, it can help in monitoring and evaluating plans and programs. Help government to assess how its various policies are affecting people, particularly the poor, measure the progress achieved over the years among others. Uganda’s Multidimensional Poverty Index includes four dimensions of poverty that include: education, health, living standards, and employment and financial inclusion,” He said.
He added that the Multidimensional Poverty Index identifies who is poor by considering the intensity of deprivations they suffer. The data sources based on to get the MPI include the National Household Survey (UNHS) of 2016/17 of 15,620 households successfully interviewed and the 2019/20 Uganda Household Survey of 13,851 households that were successfully interviewed.