World Leaders Build
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UGANDA     By Sandra Zaweede

Uganda, Africa -- Uganda’s World Leaders Build celebration began in Luweero District, Katikamu county, on Tuesday, Aug. 7. Various NGO (non-governmental organizations) representatives, diplomats, religious leaders, members of parliament, cabinet ministers, army and local council representatives graced the ceremony, which was jointly organized by the Ministry of Works, Housing and Communications and Habitat for Humanity Uganda.
Photo by Tilly Grey
  Habitat homeowner Jennifer Nabirye and affiliate chairperson Juliette Waisa dance in front of a Habitat house in Jinja, Uganda. (2001)

Uganda has seen improvements in housing quality despite high poverty levels and limited mortgage financing in the country, according to a message from President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni, read by The Right Honourable Prime Minister, Prof. Apollo Nsibambi at the opening ceremony.

Habitat was cited by other speakers at the event as a major player in improving housing in Uganda. Grass thatched houses in Uganda have dropped from 52 percent in 1996 to 42 percent in 2000, and corrugated iron roofs increased from 48 percent to 57 percent over the same period.

Several Ugandan student groups participated in the ceremony, including Wobulenzi Parents School, Muulusa Secondary School and Katikamu High School. Makerere University�s campus chapter ushered at the event and also raised enough money to build a house for the World Leaders Build. Construction on that house will commence on August 19 at the Pallisa District, Eastern Uganda.

The highlight of the event was when Prime Minister Nsibambi and other distinguished guests left their seats to go and build. More than 300 volunteers will build 10 houses during the week.

— Sandra Zaweede is Campus Chapters and Youth Programs volunteer for Habitat for Humanity Uganda

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