Uganda co-operation project “Establishing service centres and building their capacities on the example of Tallinn”

The foundation Tallinn Development and Training Centre organized from November 13 to November 19. 2016, a study visit to Tallinn and Estonia for four Ugandan representatives within a framework of a developmental co-operation project “Establishing service centres (one-stop- shop centres to provide public services) and building their capacities on the example of Tallinn”. The visit took place in accordance with an approved action plan of the developmental co-operation project and participants of the project were high officials from the Public Services Ministry of Uganda and the Civil Service College of Uganda. Unfortunately, the fifth member of the delegation of Uganda, City Secretary of Mbarara became ill shortly before the start of the study visit and the doctors did not allow him to participate in the training.

The goal of the Ugandan-Estonian joint developmental co-operation project’s first study visit to Tallinn and Estonia was to introduce experiences of providing public services, organizing work and using ICT solutions in different level service halls of Estonian state institutions and local governments. In addition, the guests were given a comprehensive overview of the variety of e-services and e-governance of Estonia and Tallinn.

The guest were thoroughly introduced to the service hall of City Government of Tallinn, its launch, development and problem solving methods of everyday issues. Project experts, Tallinn City Secretary Mr Toomas Sepp and manager of the service hall Ms Elle Veltmann gave corresponding presentations and training sessions. Head of District Mr Tiit Terik and district’s specialists introduced City district of Nõmme’s service hall and services provided there. The guests were also given an overview of the workflow of Tallinn Social Welfare and Health Care Department and the Municipal Police.

The Ugandan delegation also met with the Deputy Mayor of Tallinn Mr Taavi Aas, who performs temporarily the duties of the Mayor and the Chairman of Tallinn City Council Mr Kalev Kallo and took part in the session of the City Council.

To give the guests a broader perspective of the diversity of service halls, they were introduced to the Police and Border Guard Board’s Tammsaare tee 47 service hall, which is probably the largest service hall providing public services in Estonia. As organisers of the study visit wanted the guest to see the provision of public services also outside the capital, the Ugandan delegation visited the county government and rural municipality government of Raplamaa. They were given an overview of providing public services in the county and municipality by county governor Mr Tõnis Blank and county secretary Ms Ene Matetski, municipality governor Kalle Toomet and municipality secretary Ants Soodla. In addition, the guests were introduced to many attractions of Raplamaa, such as the Vigala river raft house, Puraviku Mill and Forge dating back to the 19th century. The Ugandan delegation gave an interview to the local newspaper “Raplamaa Sõnumid” to share their experiences learned in Raplamaa.

An important part of the study visit was visiting Estonian State Chancellery, where Head of the Government Secretariat Mr Aivar Rahno introduced developments of Estonian e- government and Ms Ilona Kään gave an overview of paperless governing and processing of applications at the State Chancellery. A memorable event that generated interest was visiting e-Estonia showroom. The Ugandan delegation met with the Director of the Development Co- operation and Humanitarian Aid funds Ms Kaili Terras and specialists from the Estonian Foreign Ministry Ms Annika Leek and Jaanus Varu.

The guests gave an overview of the results of the previous joint developmental co-operation project and its follow-up activities in Uganda. They also shared their experiences from the ongoing visit to Estonia and future steps of the co-operation project. The guests gave interviews to local newspapers „Raplamaa Sõnumid“,„Nõmme Sõnumid“ and „Pealinn“ about their doings and experiences learned in Estonia. Raepress uploaded the information from interviews to the official website of Tallinn and clips reflecting the study visit were broadcasted in news episodes of Tallinn TV and TV3.

At meetings held with the experts of Tallinn the two parties discussed future joint activities of the co-operation project in Uganda, establishing and developing service halls, which provide public services in Uganda. Both sides agreed on theme choices for the next visit.

The co-operation partners agreed that the initial dates of the visit of Estonian experts to Uganda will be 19 to 28 of March, 2017.

During the visit, in accordance with the developmental co-operation project, there will be meetings held with the Minister, Chancellor and other high officials of the Public Services Ministry of Ugandan and the Memorandum of Understanding will be signed. The Estonian delegation will advise specialists involved in the work of service halls at the Ministry of Public Services of Ugandan as well as in the cities of Jinja and Mbarara.

In addition to the study program the guests also visited Tallinn Old Town and other important and memorable sight and were able to enjoy what is for them an exotic snowy winter.

PHOTOS and MATERIALS of the study visit are HERE and HERE (materials)

Newspaper articles and TV coverages are HERE (tallinn.ee), HERE (pealinn.ee), HERE (Rapla Sõnumid), HERE (Nõmme Sõnumid), HERE (tv3.ee) and HERE (TallinnaTV starting from 13:15)

Collaborative project funded by the Estonian Foreign Ministry’s Development Co-operation and Humanitarian Aid funds.