By Kabuye Ronald
25% of the victims of northern war who were affected and still traumatized by the Lord’s Resistance Army war led by Joseph Kony, are still in hiding and fear to confront the rehabilitation centers and support project rolled out by the Trust Fund for Victims TFV, an organization that was established by the International Criminal Court ICC in 2008 to provide physical, psychological, financial and reparation assistance to the victims.
Addressing a news conference in Kampala on behalf of the ICC president Sylvia Fernandez who was engaged in the meeting with president Museveni, Pieter W. I. De Baan the executive director of the TFV attributed the 25% to the community stigma before adding that as a way of fighting the vice, they embarked on sensitization and awareness campaign especially through FM radio station in the northern region of Uganda
Statistics indicate that 45000 are the direct beneficiaries while 200000 are the indirect beneficiaries of the TFV in Uganda since its inception in 2008 and 61,721 and 171,659 respectively in the Democratic Republic of Congo DRC.
In Monitory terms 23.5 million Euros has been spent in both Uganda and Democratic Republic of Congo were the TFV is operational apparently leaving the fund with 10 million Euros of which half of it is reserved in case they run out of donations and operational funds then it’s put in use.
Peter says that by virtual of being a member of the ICC, Uganda contribute some amount to the fund however only four African countries are making donations to the Fund in additional to private donors of which they first keenly scrutinize for assurance that they don’t engage in any criminal activities.
The countries who contribute from Africa are South Africa, Namibia, Senegal and Democratic Republic of Congo thus an appeal to the rest of the African countries to make donation as a way of exhibiting their solidarity with the victims.
Peter further revealed that they are contemplating to extend the program to other African countries who are victims of crimes against humanity of which the ones prioritized are Ivory Coast, Kenya, Mali and Central African Republic.
When asked about the ongoing Judicial proceeding in Huge against Dominic Ongwen who happens to be one of the commanders of the LRA, Peter said that TFV activities are not in any way influenced by ICC and its rulings since their duty is to rehabilitate the victims.