Social Changes for Uganda

Social Changes for Uganda

May 6, 2015|News| by Brittany Pendergrass

Uganda has had a tumultuous history. The country is well known for the military dictatorship of its third President, Idi Amin, who was portrayed in an Oscar-winning performance by Forest Whitaker in The Last King of Scotland. Freedom of the World reports since 1972 have gone back and forth rating the country as “not free” or “partly free” (1). The country has a long history of violence, oppression and human rights violations.

However, Uganda has made strides in recent years to replace that history with a future of openness of dignity. At the end of April, Uganda’s Attorney General Hon. Freddie Ruhindi presented the country’s fifth periodic report to the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights (ACHPR). The report was overdue, with the last report coming in 2010. Setbacks including the Ebola crisis in West Africa and political turnover delayed this new report. Some had begun to speculate that the reason for the extended delay was bad news.

It appears that was not the case. The ACHPR Commissioner, Hon. Lucy Asuagbor, “applauded [Uganda] for the comprehensive and detailed report as well as the candid responses by the Minister” (2). The report, which is structured to give an overview of the problems and responses by each ministry of the Ugandan government, showed positive signs of progress. Additionally, the report acknowledged the long way Uganda has to go to meet international human rights benchmarks. Nonetheless, the Commission was positive about the report and is looking forward to see the continued progress towards a freer Uganda.

All in all Uganda is making strides for social change to match the friendliness of the people who live there. Uganda is a wonderful place to visit for its people alone. The smile on their faces when a visitor arrives is welcoming and contagious. The local people will give you a grander sense of this country, its cultural and way of life. This is exactly why the Commission is trying to make a better and more open Uganda for all.

  1. Freedom in the World. Freedom House, Washington, DC. 2014.
  2. “Uganda Presents Human Rights Report” Red Pepper News, Kampala, Uganda. 4-29-2014.
  3. “Why you should visit Uganda” Anne Nakure Onyodi.