The Compendium of Conflicts in Uganda 2014 is a ground-breaking work of the Refugee Law Project, School of Law Makerere University. It’s an attempt to establish and integrate the ordinary experiences of Uganda’s multiple conflicts, histories and truths with the view of informing the national understanding and narratives of conflicts and their legacies, as well as mechanisms that can be used to address them.
A product of over two years of research entitled the National Reconciliation and Transitional Justice (NRTJ) Audit 2011-2013, the Compendium is a narration of lived conflict experiences and perceptions on peace, justice and nation-building from the grassroots. The NRTJ Audit was a participatory research process conducted in 20 districts equally distributed across the different sub-regions of Uganda (Northern, Central, Eastern, Western and Karamoja) as a transitional phase from the RLP’s Beyond Juba Project 1 (2007 – 2011) to the current Beyond Juba Project II (2012- 2015).
The Audit sought to comprehensively map out pasts and on-going conflicts and their legacies and outstanding accountability and reconciliation issues in Uganda by: documenting in the selected districts, from a community perspective, all armed conflicts experienced by the community and whose legacies remain unaddressed; identifying and assessing the outstanding accountability and reconciliation (transitional justice) needs related to these conflicts; identifying and networking with key stakeholders, local civil society and community based organizations or groups working on transitional justice related issues.
Through focus group discussions and key informant interviews, the NRTJ Audit documented over 125 conflicts, the vast majority of which involved armed violence, yet remained largely unknown beyond the areas immediately affected and still impacting on locals’ perception of peace, justice and belonging.
The Compendium reveals diversity in Uganda’s multiple conflicts, but also a common concern to address key forms and sources of fragmentation, and with that, an understanding of cycle of violence and a desire for greater national cohesion.