Human development

Government aspires to equip citizens with relevant knowledge, information and skills to enable them improve their quality of life, respond to development challenges and compete nationally, regionally and internationally. Government’s investment in human development has accordingly gained traction over the NDP period. NDP II prioritizes human capital development as one of its two fundamentals for development. 

The Government of Uganda has various legal and institutional frameworks in place to support human development. The 1992 Government White Paper on Education provides the basis for official policy on the purposes and programs of education. The papers’ articulation of Uganda’s education system continues to be the supreme strategic guide of the sector. Uganda’s National Health Policy whose overall objective is to reduce mortality, morbidity and fertility provides strategic guidance in the health sector. The central strategy of the policy is ensuring access to the Minimum Health Care Package. The minimum package comprises of interventions that address the major causes of the disease burden and is the cardinal reference in determining the allocation of public funds and other essential inputs to the health sector. The need to implement a compulsory National Health Insurance Scheme is crucial in order to mobilize a pool of health financing resources for income and health risk cross-subsidization. Cabinet accordingly approved, in June 2019, the National Health Insurance Scheme Bill which is meant to improve the provision and access of Health services to all Ugandans. The Bill is intended to facilitate the provision of accessible, affordable acceptable and quality healthcare services to citizens irrespective of their age, economic, health and social status.

Government continues to implement initiatives aimed at equipping and skilling Ugandans as evidenced by investments in the Universal Primary Education and Business Technical and Vocational Education and Training programs; as well as the Student’s Loan Scheme. Government has also made significant progress in expanding community level health promotion and prevention programs to reduce the preventive disease burden. Government interventions in the water and sanitation sector have increased access to safe water and ensured adequate water for human consumption and production. Improved access to safe water, environmental sanitation and hygiene education constitute critical components for human capital development.

Both maternal and child health outcomes have also improved with a significant decline in maternal and infant mortality rate from 438 to 336 deaths per 100,000 live births and 54 to 43 deaths per 1000 live births between 2011 and 2016. Over-all life expectancy in Uganda has accordingly risen to 63years from 58years in 2015. Enrolment in primary schools and general literacy rates have significantly increased. There is an improvement in primary school learning outcomes. Gender parity in primary education has also been achieved. There is improved access to sources of drinking water in all parts of the country.


  1. The 2020 Human Development Report indicates that Uganda’s Human Development Index stands at 0.544 as at 2019, an improvement from 0.528 in 2018.
  2. UPE School enrolment increased by 22% from 8,840,589 (4,395,513 Boys; 4,445,076 Girls) in FY 2017/18 to 10,766,994 (5,345,245 Boys; 5,421,749 Girls) in FY 2019/20, indicating a 1.01 Gender Parity Index in favor of girls.
  3. Under Secondary Education, Government registered a 45% increase in total enrolment from 1,370,583 (716,118 boys; 654,465 girls) in FY2017/18 to 1,991,915 (1,004,524 boys; 987,391 girls) in 2019/20.
  4. The average years of schooling have increased from 5.7years in 2016 to 6.1years in 2017.
  5. Under Out Patient Department (OPD), new OPD utilization rate increased by 10% to 1.1 in 2019/20 from 1.0 in 2018/19
  6. The current safe water coverage in rural and urban areas is estimated at 68% and 70.5% respectively. So far, 48,338 villages representing 70% of the total villages have been served with at least a source of water. Out of this total, 9,217 villages are in rural areas, 4928 are in small towns while 6248 belong to large towns under NWSC.