- Bidibidi settlement is a home to 289,000 South Sudan refugees with five zones covering the Sub-counties of Romogi, Ariwa, Kululu, Odravu and Kochi
- The outgoing commandant said he worked well with the district officials
- Infrastructural development in the camp has been his main issue in Bidibidi
- Security Bidibidi and Yumbe in general remains a top priority in the settlement following some protests last year over unequal distribution of jobs
By Elema Robert
Yumbe- A new settlement commandant has been posted for Bidibidi refugee settlement, the largest settlement in Uganda.
Mr David Mugenyi the incoming commandant formerly working in Kyaka ll refugee settlement in Kyegegwa district will replace the outgoing Bidibidi settlement commandant Mr Robert Baryamwesiga who has been transferred to Kyaka ll refugee settlement effective Tuesday this week.
Speaking during his farewell party at Bidibidi base camp on Monday, Mr Robert Baryamwesiga the outgoing Bidibidi settlement commandant appreciated the implementing partners and the local government for their team spirit during the course in Bidibidi settlement.
“We started Bidibidi settlement with few members of the staff but later others joined and we also co-opted the district which led to the expansion of the operations in Bidibidi refugee settlement. Bidibidi is a reflection of what Uganda is and we are a reflection of the United spirit of humanity that we open our hands, resources and the community should give what they have to embrace the suffering of the refugees.”
He said infrastructure has been his main issue in Bidibidi which has been put right so they probably need someone who can focus on protection and other areas.
Mr Sunday Anyole official from CEFORD who represented the partners said the outgoing commandant made them cooperate and work in team as partners.
“I am very humbled to the outgoing commandant for making Bidibidi what it’s today. All the achievements in the settlement are due to his efforts and we shall continue to seek guardians from him even if he will be far away from here,” he said.
Mr Jafar Akasio the head of UNHCR Sub-office Yumbe said it has been tough moments for them when Bidibidi refugee settlement was opened newly in 2016 but said they have been together with the outgoing commandant pushing right to left for good reasons.
“I haven’t been to other settlements but I am reliable informed that we are better positioned than any other settlement in the vicinity here when it comes to infrastructure. The infrastructural development in Bidibidi refugee settlement is ok but we shall give more support to strengthen other areas,” he said.
Mr Saidi Aniku the district vice chairperson said as a local government they have done a lot under the leadership of the outgoing commandant.
“West Nile and Uganda as a whole is proud of Bidibidi and I am not afraid to say that Robert would be an ambassador to Bidibidi. As we started the settlement, there were a lot of issues which resulted into retreats and managerial discussions of how to go about the management of Bidibidi but if you tour the settlement now, a lot has been achieved in all the sectors.”
Mr Richard Andama the RDC said there is the element of brilliance in the outgoing commandant and his legacy left in Yumbe should be remembered.
“The legacy someone leaves should be physically reflected and I pray that the district council should take it up and name Yumbe-Bidibidi road in his name,” he said.
He said the security Bidibidi and Yumbe in general is guaranteed and they shall work round the clock to ensure that the refugees, host community and the workers in the settlement are fully protected.