The Refugee Solidarity Summit in Kampala has realized over Shs350 billion (about $358.2 million) in pledges towards South Sudan refugees in Uganda.
The money raised in pledges is way below the $2billion that the government of Uganda expected to raise from the summit hosted by President Museveni and attended by UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres.
The European Union (EU) emerged as the biggest contributor to the Solidarity Summit in Kampala. It on Wednesday pledged 85 million euros ($95 million) to Uganda.
Christos Stylianides, the EU Commissioner for Humanitarian Affairs and Crisis Management said the total contribution from European Union and its member states amounted to 210 million euro (about $234 million).
“On behalf of the people of Europe, I am pleased to announce that the European Union steps up its support to the refugee response in Uganda with an amount of 85 million euro. With the additional separate announcements from the European member states who are present here today, the overall help from the people of Europe amount to almost 210 million euro,” said Stylianides.
Other EU Member states that individually announced pledges included Germany with $55 million , United Kingdom with $50 million, Sweden with $27 million , Italy with $5 million , Norway with $4 million and Austria $5 million.
Outside the EU, Japan pledged $10 million, China pledged $5 million, United Arab Emirates $5 million, Canada$ 11 million, China $500,000, African Union $100,000, Gabon $250,000, Equatorial Guinea $100,000, India $1m among others.
President Musveni thanked development partners and states for the contribution saying that showed that World is committed towards ensuring a conflict free region.
Mr Guterres, who stayed to witness the entire pledging conference also thanked development partners for their support to Uganda. He said this will transform the lives of many refugees and also build them into better people that their country needs.
Uganda hosts 1.2 million refugees mostly from South Sudan,Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo, Eritrea and Somalia.
There are up to 900,000 south Sudanese refugees in Uganda who have fled conflict between forces loyal to President Salvar Kiir and first vice President Riek Machar.
Uganda has been lauded for its open door policy towards refugees, as it freely welcomes refugees and offers them land in which they cultivate crops and settle.
About 2,000 refugees enter the country daily straining the available meagre financial resources. In some refugee settlements in the country, refugees complain of little food ration, Lack of medicine in health facilities, and education facilities pose another challenge.