Original Research

Exercising Democratic Rights and Obligations as a Mechanism for Improved Service Delivery: The Case of Kampala City, Uganda

S. N. Lubinga, L. M. du Plessis
Africa’s Public Service Delivery & Performance Review | Vol 4, No 1 | a107 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/apsdpr.v4i1.107 | © 2016 S. N. Lubinga, L. M. du Plessis | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 23 November 2016 | Published: 01 March 2016

About the author(s)

S. N. Lubinga, Independent Institute of Education, South Africa
L. M. du Plessis, University of Free State, South Africa

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Emanating from literature (Ministry of Local government 2013:10; Gaventa 2002: p.26; Odero 2004: p.2), it is apparent that participatory frameworks exist in Uganda. However, in spite of a two decade-plus long prevalence these democratic participatory frameworks, the services rendered to the citizens are still poor. For instance, the delivery of health services has remained pitiable and the majority of people have turned to private hospitals. The provision for adequate infrastructure for the children enrolled in primary schools remains a challenge to the education sector. Yet, access to safe water is estimated at as low as 9% in some districts, while an estimated 19% of the improved water supply systems are still not functioning (UBOS, 2010: pp.33-57). This is not only attesting the statement that participatory initiatives in Uganda are more like “wish lists” than substantive statements that are guaranteed in practice, but also raising the research question as to what extent does the exercise of democratic rights and obligations of citizens by citizen’s impact on public service delivery in Uganda?  In answering this question, this paper applied a quantitative research method in which aself-administered questionnaire survey based on three variables used to measure the exercise of democratic rights and obligations was distributed to a representative sample of 100 participants from Kampala city selected from three urban division councils (Kawempe, Makindye and Kampala Central). Thereafter, using the ordered logistic regression model of analysis, constructed on the findings the paper divulges that the exercise of democratic rights and obligations by citizens has a positive implication towards quality service delivery.  


Democratic Rights and Obligations; Citizen Participation; Public Service Delivery; Kampala; Uganda


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