Uganda: Government Minister Shuts Down Human Rights Workshop

The Minister of State for Ethics and Integrity, Hon. Rev. Fr. Lokodo Simon, yesterday shut down a capacity-building workshop organized by Freedom and Roam Uganda (FARUG) in Entebbe, Uganda and attempted to have FARUG Executive Director Kasha Nabagesera Jacqueline arrested. Without a valid warrant, but accompanied by the police, the Minister insisted on inspecting the training materials being used and closed the workshop in person.
The events came exactly a week after the reintroduction of the Anti-Homosexuality Bill (2009) to the Parliament of Uganda. As well as threatening the safety and security of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex people, the draft legislation contains harsh provisions which would seriously restrict the rights to freedom of expression, association and assembly and would threaten the ability of some human rights organisations to continue operating.
The East and Horn of Africa Human Rights Defenders Project (EHAHRDP) condemns this infringement on the right to freedom of assembly and association as provided by the Constitution of the Republic of Uganda, and calls on the Minister of State for Ethics and Integrity to explain the grounds on which the actions were taken. EHAHRDP recalls the rights of human rights defenders to carry out their legitimate human rights activities without harassment or intimidation as provided by the UN Declaration on Human Rights Defenders.
For more information, please contact:
Hassan Shire, Executive Director, East and Horn of Africa Human Rights Defenders Project: [email protected] or +256 772 753 753


Human Rights Defender of the Month: Anny Kapenga

As a young student, Anny Kapenga used to cringe at the cult-like worship of Mobutu Sese Seko, the then Zaire’s President. By then, in the early 1990s, Zaire was still under one party rule, and calls were increasing for Mobutu to open political space to allow other parties to operate. In the meantime, however, all Zairians were expected to show affection for Mobutu wherever they gathered in public.

Students across Zaire’s schools were required to sing and dance adoringly before his (Mobutu)’s portrait every morning before they went to class, and all school scholastic materials were emblemed with his portrait. A young Anny never really appreciated the obsession:


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