IF it were not for the fairly well-furnished sub-county headquarters, the people of Aliba in Moyo district would be right to say they are a forgotten people. The sub-county has over 25,000 people, most of whom are farmers and fishermen.
The headquarters, constructed by the Northern Uganda Social Action Fund and furnished by other donors paints a picture of normalcy.
â€œThis was a war zone in the 1980s and early 1990s,â€ says Geoffrey Vuciri, the sub-county chief. Groups like the now defunct Uganda National Rescue Front and the West-Nile Bank Front operated in the region. Subsequently, a peace deal was signed in early 2000 and peace was restored.
â€œMost of the people have not engaged in meaningful agriculture for a long time. The youth had become rebels, while the old depended on handouts,â€ says Joseph Acidri, a resident. â€œSince then, a lot of effort has been put to change the situation,â€ he says.
The crops cultivated in the region include cassava, potatoes, cereals like maize, sorghum and millet. Bee-keeping is also an upcoming activity.
However, even with the efforts of local leaders, the task of recovery has been difficult to accomplish.
There is no grid electricity in Aliba town. There is also no power dam, but Aliba sub-county has lights on and the computers in the offices are powered up.
A few months ago, Aliba, like the other sub-counties in the disrict, did not have power to run the computers. The European Development Fund under the Support for the Decentralisation Programme however, stepped in to assist.
The region has been equiped with a 48-voltage solar system. â€œWe use it for the computers. It has made our secretarial work easy,â€ says Vuciri.
â€œWe used to take our work to the district planning department, but now we do it here, thanks to this powerful solar system,â€ he says.
Records at the sub-county are now kept on computer. You can, for example, access the sub-countyâ€™s three-year development plan off the computer.
Dufile sub-county has also been equipped with a solar system.
â€œThis contribution has empowered our sub-counties,â€ says Samuel Tako, the Moyo deputy chief administrative officer. He says such empowerment is invaluable to the district.
Road to recovery for Aliba sub-county