Uganda: UPR Submission

Uganda: UPR Submission - Civic Space

Charles Kabonero (centre right), managing director of Newsline, reading a copy as it comes off the printing press. Charles and his colleagues had to flee to Uganda after their independent weekly Umuseso newspaper was banned in their native country. Now working in exile in Kampala, Charles and his colleagues started a new newspaper Newsline.

ARTICLE 19 welcomes the opportunity to contribute to the second cycle of the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) of Uganda. This submission focuses on Uganda’s compliance with its obligations under international human rights law to protect and promote the right to freedom of expression and information.

During the first cycle, Uganda accepted many recommendations that sought to advance protections for the right to freedom of expression and information. These include:

  • Amend accordingly all laws that are contrary to Uganda’s national and international obligations to respect, protect and promote the freedoms of expression and assembly (Sweden)
  • Undertake legislative reforms so that protection and promotion of laws on the freedom of expression and peaceful assemblies and associations would be guaranteed to all the residents of the country (Switzerland)
  • Lift laws that are contrary to the state’s international obligations to respect, protect and promote freedom of expression (Belgium, Slovakia) and the right of peaceful and legitimate assembly (Belgium)
  • End intimidation, threats and physical attacks on journalists and promote open reporting and commentary on issues of public concern (Netherlands)
  • Uphold the rights to freedom of expression and assembly (Austria)
  • Guarantee freedom of expression, particularly the possibility to express criticism and opinion regarding acts of the government (Chile)
  • Train security forces to respect freedoms of expression and assembly (United States)

ARTICLE 19 notes that the Ugandan government has not implemented any of these recommendations. Instead, the situation of freedom of expression has further deteriorated. This submission addresses the following:

  • Attacks on freedom of expression
  • Laws restricting freedom of expression
  • Blocking of websites and social media during elections
  • Access to information

Read the full submission here.

Font Resize
Contrast