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Gulu Municipality, Japanese City Sign Cooperation Deal

A metropolitan city in Japan is set to mentor Gulu Municipality on city administration, infrastructure development and other social services delivery over the next three years. Under what is technically known as city twinning, Izumisano City will also cooperate with Gulu Municipality on three core areas of culture; administration; and education and sports.
Gulu Municipality Mayor George Labeja (L) and Yoshihiko Matushita, the Vice Mayor of Izuminsano City in Japan after Signing the Memorandum of Understanding.

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A metropolitan city in Japan is set to mentor Gulu Municipality on city administration, infrastructure development and other social services delivery over the next three years.

Under what is technically known as city twinning, Izumisano City will also cooperate with Gulu Municipality on three core areas of culture; administration; and education and sports.

George Labeja, the Mayor of Gulu Municipality says there are many ways through which the cooperation signed on Tuesday from the Mayor's Garden in Gulu will benefit Uganda as well.

Labeja says the cooperation will inspire the development of remote parts of Gulu Municipality into upscale cosmopolitan business centres. He says a commitment by Izumisano city to host the Uganda Olympic team while in Japan for the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo is the first fruit of this cooperation in sports.

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Francis Barabanawe, the Town Clerk of Gulu Municipality says the partnership aims at preserving and protecting the cultural values of the two metropolitan cities.

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Barabanawe hopes Gulu will derive values from the Japanese stringent management approach to efficient, timely and quality works. He says the post-World war experience of Japan is critical for transforming post-conflict Acholi.

According to the town clerk, the two cities signed a memorandum of understanding on this cooperation for purposes of mobilising development resources to finance the partnership.

Yoshihiko Matushita, the Vice Mayor of Izumisano City expressed optimism over the cooperation saying it should promote agricultural development in organic cotton among others.

Kazuaki Kameda, the Japanese Ambassador to Uganda said twinning the two cities will promote stronger bilateral relationship between Uganda and Japan.

Prime Minister Dr. Ruhakana Rugunda pledged firm government support to twinning of cities saying it is a good practice to learn from experiences of others.

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According to Dr. Rugunda, other municipalities should learn and emulate the example of Gulu and twin with other foreign cities for enhanced service delivery and development.