The creation of new districts and social service delivery in Uganda: A case study of Buikwe District
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This study was conducted to examine the factors affecting the delivery of social services in the then newly created Buikwe district. The study was specifically carried out to identify the factors responsible for the creation of Buikwe district, the key resources available for Buikwe district to deliver social services and the challenges encountered by Buikwe district in the delivery of social services. The social services that were considered in this study included education, health. In this study, a case study design was employed to study the target population so as to obtain detailed data. Data were collected by use of the following methods; 20 Key informant interviews, 3 focus group discussion, observation and 10 questionnaires. A total of 80 respondents participated in the study and were selected through purposive and simple random sampling. Data were analyzed through a content and thematic analysis. Coding, editing and tabulation were also used to process quantitative data which was analyzed through the use of Statistical Package for social science (SPSS) computer programme. The study found out that districts in Uganda were mainly created to bring services closer to people, to create employment opportunities, to reduce the size of the big districts, political conflicts between district councillors among others. The major sources of revenue for Buikwe district were the conditional and unconditional grants from the central government, locally raised revenue and donations from local and international organizations. It was found out that before the creation of this district, the delivery of health service was poor. It was characterized by high staff absenteeism, lack of drugs at health centres among others. For the education sector, it was revealed that most schools lacked classroom structures, pupils and teachers were poorly fed and the grades for pupils were generally poor. However, after the creation of Buikwe district, there were some improvements in the health centres and schools. Some facilities were renovated and supplied with drugs. Health workers were also regular in attendance to duty. In schools, it was revealed that the pupil-teacher ratio improved, more schools were constructed and more desks were distributed to schools by the district. The findings also revealed that the main challenges faced by the district were related to the limited financial and human resources. The researcher thus recommends the establishment of revenue monitoring and assessment teams in newly created districts, an increase of government funding, lifting the ban on the recruitment of district staff and also organize community sensitisation and awareness campaigns. These will enable the district to improve on its performance.