IOM, Uganda Host Border Management Workshop
GENEVA, Switzerland, May 23, 2014/African Press Organization (APO)/ -- IOM and the Government of Uganda have organized a two-day workshop in Kampala to discuss procedures, regulatory frameworks, systems and mechanisms for an improved border management system in Uganda.
The workshop, which was part of a broader IOM border management project funded by the Government of Japan, brought together 15 Ugandan government officials involved in the development of a comprehensive border and migration management assessment.
Speaking at the opening ceremony, Japanese Ambassador to Uganda Junzo Fujita underscored the need to improve border management in Uganda and the region. “Since the world has become borderless, a threat to one means a threat to all. In other worlds, vulnerable borders in Uganda can even affect Japan,” he said.
Ugandan Minister of State James Baba noted: “Although Uganda is a peaceful and stable country, there are many border challenges that we have to solve. With an improved border management through a coordinated multi-agency approach we will come up with solutions.”
East Africa is a volatile region, facing numerous challenges from political, military and economic instability. This has placed great strain on Uganda's border management, exposing its borders to irregular movements, transnational crime and the movement of terrorists.
Uganda is a landlocked country and its national borders are particularly difficult to manage. It shares an estimated 2,698km border with South Sudan, Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC.) Cross border challenges include trafficking in persons and smuggling of precious materials, which often fuel conflicts.
Uganda has more than forty border crossing points and few of them have the equipment to electronically register a machine-readable passport. The country also needs basic travel document verification equipment, staff training, communication systems and transport to conduct a greater number of border patrols.