Accra, Ghana
The Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative (CHRI) is an independent non-governmental organisation created to ensure the practical realisation of human rights in the countries of the Commonwealth. We push for an adherence to the Commonwealth's Harare Principles and the United Nation's Universal Declaration of Human Rights. CHRI was established in 1987 after several Commonwealth countries voiced their concern about a lack of focus on Human rights within the Commonwealth organization. CHRI currently has three offices; in Delhi, London and Accra. The Africa office was opened in Accra in 2001 and is at the forefront of the fight to uphold basic human freedoms in the region. We work in three main areas of human rights: Human Rights Advocacy; Access to justice and The Right to Information.

Monday 30 May 2011

Right to Information - Lessons Learnt in the UK

Last weekend a group of hackers in Nigeria known as the Naija Cyber Hactivists attacked Nigerian state websites and posted demands that President Goodluck Jonathan should, as promised, pass the long awaited Right to Information (RTI) Bill.

With the notable exception of Liberia, which passed a freedom of information bill last year, the RTI movement is stalling in West Africa. In Nigeria the government has been digging in its heels over legislation first tabled in 2006 whilst in Ghana the eight year fight for the RTI Bill drags on.
So why are politicians stalling over the RTI Bill? The simple answer is that it would, to coin a phrase, be like turkeys voting for Christmas. Governments have a vested interest in being the sole masters of the flow of information which can, in extreme cases, afford them the opportunity for self-enrichment under the cloak of secrecy. Political parties often pay lip service to the RTI bill whilst in opposition as it gives them the opportunity to seek disclosures that embarrass the governing party. However, more often than not, opposition parties tend to take the view that one day they may themselves be in Government and foresee that such support might return to haunt them.
The post-implementation experience of other countries with RTI acts certainly suggests that politicians have good reason to be worried about preserving their vested interests.
The United Kingdom’s Freedom of Information Act (FOI) is a good case in point and one with which, as a UK lawyer, I am familiar. Passed in 2000, the bill has led to a dramatic shift in the balance of power between citizen and the state. Over half a million requests were made in the first five years alone.
The parliamentary expenses scandal in the UK finds its roots in FOI requests made by journalists in 2005. True, ultimately a CD of leaked data allowed the press to discover some of the more serious – and criminal – examples of abuse. However, much of the detail – claims by MPs for mole clearance, moat cleaning, light-bulb replacement and pornographic movies – is only now in the public domain as a result of the Act and three years of journalists’ perseverence. The damning disclosures led to a wholesale reform of the parliamentary expenses regime and the establishment of an independent watchdog. Many MPs resigned as a result of the scandal, a number were prosecuted.

Furthermore, it is only as a result of the UK FOI Act that we know which big businessmen the British Prime Minister has dinner with on a regular basis, we uncover the fact that research related to climate change science was suppressed, we learn that contraceptive implants have quietly been made available to girls as young as 13 by the UK’s National Health Service and disturbingly we discover that the UK operated a clandestine torture programme in post-war Germany.
The people of other countries have also been able to hold their governments accountable as a result of RTI laws. In the Republic of Ireland, the Irish Freedom of Information Act has allowed the public to discover the shocking extent of church and state negotiations over compensation for clerical abuse cases. In the US, the largest single group of freedom of information applicants is not, as one might expect, journalists but actually senior citizens. Seniors used the long-standing federal legislation to obtain copies of their benefits packages or information about Medicare prescription drug programmes. Companies use the US legislation to find out about government contracts they could bid on or what regulations were being formulated.
Looking at the uncomfortable experiences of their foreign colleagues, it is perfectly understandable why politicians in Ghana might hesitate to pass similar legislation. However, from the citizen’s perspective, those same experiences make the case for introducing the legislation all the more compelling. RTI legislation will make it easier to hold their politicians to account and allow people to exercise their individual and collective rights more effectively. Politicians must always remember that they are only ever the temporary custodians for the information they hold on trust for the people. A right to information act will, for the first time, give ordinary people the true ownership of information. As the great Kofi Annan once said, “Knowledge is power. Information is liberating”. It is now time for the politicians in Ghana to pass a strong bill, empower and liberate the people by allowing them access to their own information.

Chris Lane, Lawyer, www.chriafrica.blogspot.com

Please contact chrislanelondon@gmail.com or call +233-021-971170 for further information.

Friday 27 May 2011

African Commonwealth Human Rights Weekly Update (21/05 - 27/05/2011)


Tuesday 24/05: Commonwealth Anti Corruption Conference:  Botswana played a host to a four day Commonwealth meeting on ways to combat corruption. In the opening speech Botswana’s President Seretse Khama Ian Khama stated that corruption is draining precious resources that could otherwise be used in public services like health and education.

Healthcare and education are known as “positive human rights”. Negative rights govern what the state cannot do to an individual (e.g arrest without charge), whilst positive rights require the state to assist citizens in achieving their rights (e.g providing a school so people can fulfill their right to education).

The rights of citizens to medical care and schooling is contained in Articles 12 and 13 of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR).


Monday 23/05: Malawi prepares for life without British Aid: Following the diplomatic row triggered last month by the government’s expulsion of the British ambassador, Fergus Cochrane-Dyet, the UK Department for International Development stated that aid to Malawi would be frozen while relations between the two countries are reviewed.

The aid freeze looks set to have a worrying impact on an economy that receives 40% of its annual budget from the donor community (20% of this aid comes from the UK).  Currently two-thirds of Malawi’s population live on less than $2 a day.


Monday 23/05: Chagossians Await the outcome of London conference: More than 150 exiled Chagos islanders gathered in London to campaign for their return to the Indian Ocean archipelago.

The islanders were forcibly evicted 40 years ago to make way for a US military base on the island of Diego Garcia. The base has come under criticism from the legal charity Reprieve which report that the base is being used for the detention of terrorism suspects.

Over the past decade, the islanders have embarked on a legal struggle for the right to return home. Three years ago, the House of Lords overturned the original high court decision that the islanders could return. The matter is now before the European Court of Human Rights.

The discussion has been complicated further following the British government's decision to declare the islands a marine protected area with a total fishing ban. A balance needs to be struck between the rights of the islanders and efforts at conservation.


Thursday 25/05: Commonwealth Observer report on Nigerian elections: Secretary-General Kamalesh Sharma announced the release of the Commonwealth report on the April 2011 elections in Nigeria.

Mr Sharma commended the Nigerian authorities for conducting credible presidential and parliamentary elections. However, significant concerns were raised about the loss of lives before and during the electoral process.

Friday 27/05: Bushfire Boycott Gathers Pace: The Swaziland Solidarity Network announce that Caiphus Semenya, will not only boycott the forthcoming “Bushfire Festival” but will not be playing in Swaziland until the “country becomes democratic”. For more info on click on the link here.

“Deep House DJ”, “Black Coffee” and “Professor” have all also pulled out of performing.

Thursday 26 May 2011

LGBT Situation in Botswana

Following on from last Thursday’s appraisal of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) rights in Africa, here is the current situation in Botswana. We will try to give you the status of each of the nineteen Commonwealth countries in Africa over the coming weeks.

Law that Criminalises Homosexuality
Practical Consequences of the law
Constitutional Clause on Equality or Right to Privacy
The Penal Code of 1964[1]

Section 164  criminalises ‘Unnatural offences’

Section 165 ‘Attempts to commit unnatural offences’

Section 166 criminalises ‘Indecent practices between persons’.  An unnatural offence is ‘carnal knowledge of any person against the order of nature’, or with an animal; and includes any person allowing another to have carnal knowledge of him or her against the order of nature.  It thus criminalises both male and female homosexual acts, with possible imprisonment of up to 7 years.  It is also an offence to commit an act of ‘gross indecency’ with any person whether in public or in private.

Section 141 defines rape as unlawful carnal knowledge of another person, or causing the penetration of a sexual organ or instrument into another person for the purposes of sexual gratification, or causes the penetration of another’s sexual organ into his or her person without their consent, or with consent obtained by force, or with impersonation of a person’s spouse. 

Kanane v. State 1995 BLR 94 (High Court)[2]
The State may enact legislation that overrides the freedoms of association and conscience, and the right of privacy in order to defend public morality. Laws prohibiting homosexual conduct under the labels of “unnatural carnal knowledge” and “gross indecency” thus do not violate constitutional rights.

These are the main local human rights organisations which seek to advocate greater recognition of LGBT rights in Botswana:

Bonela – Botswana Network on Ethics, Laws and HIV/AIDS

Ditshwanelo – Centre for Human Rights

LeGaBiBo – Lesbians, Gays and Bisexuals of Botswana

The Constitution of Botswana, 1966. 

Section 3 protects the fundamental rights and freedoms of the individual such that every person, whatever his race, place of origin, political opinions, colour, creed or sex, (but subject to respect for others and for the public interest) in matters including life, liberty, security of the person, the protection of law and the privacy of the home.  This right can be limited for public interest reasons.

Section 9 further guarantees the protection of the privacy of the home, subject to public safety, order, morality and health. This right can also be limited for public interest reasons.

Wednesday 25 May 2011

‘Keeping their promises – human rights in the AU’

Today marks the annual commemoration of the founding of the African Union.
Amongst the objectives of the AU's leading institutions is a commitment to promoting and protecting human rights in accordance with the African Charter and other relevant human rights instruments. And this Africa Day sees cause for celebration with Nigeria, Rwanda, Uganda, Lesotho and the Seychelles having recently ratified all eight of the main human rights conventions. We are seeing increased attention and commitment to improving disability rights across the continent. Great strides are being made to reduce maternal mortality. On the surface it would seem that the commitment of the AU and its members to human rights is to be applauded. However, running parallel to the human rights rhetoric of the AU is an entrenched failure to hold the governments of its members accountable for failures to uphold promises made under this human rights agenda.

On a day that commemorates the founding of a union, we look to the values that we share. The clear answer to the question of what the members of the AU have in common is poverty. Therefore the need for the fundamental rights enshrined in the UDHR is paramount. Access to education, work, healthcare, the right to vote, and religious freedom are basic rights that are often guaranteed in theory, but not evidenced in practice. We need only look next door to our West African neighbours to see examples. Severe repression of journalists and demonstrations continues in The Gambia, a country that paradoxically provides the base for the AU’s key human rights body – the African Commission on Human and Peoples' Rights. Extra-judicial killings continue in Cameroon. Even on our own doorstep forced evictions continue to occur. And what response do we see to these abuses? Accountability rests neither with law enforcement agencies, local or central authorities, nor with the government. An example of the most grave human rights abuses in recent times, the murder of over one thousand Kenyans in post-election violence in 2007/2008, saw not the Kenyan government step in to hold the perpetrators accountable, nor the AU, but the international community through the International Criminal Court (ICC). 

The AU declares its commitment to international justice to ensure the accountability for gross violations of human rights. But this quest for accountability frequently acquiesces to the notion of ‘regional solidarity’ and the multifarious political agendas that exist between its members. The initial response of the AU and its members to the issuance of Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir’s arrest warrant for war crimes and crimes against humanity provides a disquieting example. Several members chose to ignore the warrant and some actively invited Bashir to visit their countries. The AU itself sought suspension of the proceedings against Bashir from the UN Security Council and stated that they would not co-operate in with the ICC in his arrest. This response contradicted the commitments made by the AU to uphold human rights and constituted an absolute failure to respect and protects the rights of the victims of these crimes and their families.

Accountability for these human rights abuses needs to be based on legal commitments that AU member governments have made to meet these obligations. Mechanisms must exist by which these governments can be held to account, and when they are found to have failed to respect the rights if their citizens, remedies must be available. There is a real opportunity here for the AU to lead by example. However, as long as this politicisation is tolerated in the context of human rights abuses, it will continue to act as an obstacle to pursuing the rights agenda that the AU itself espouses.

Challenging politicisation in the context of the AU’s commitment to accountability for human rights abuses is of utmost importance. This is because the rights enshrined in the UDHR and associated treaties have global applicability. They are common to all people respective of cultural or economic differences. It is a poor excuse to hide behind the idea of cultural relativism when it comes to rights such as access to education or healthcare. And it is important to note that these rights are not stand-alone. Take the example of last year’s ruling in the ECOWAS Community Court of Justice in Abuja on the right to education. The judgment stated that Nigerians have a legally enforceable right to education, dismissing the government’s assertion that education is ‘a mere directive policy of the government and not a legal entitlement of the citizens’. This was a laudable statement. However, this right cannot be realised in a country where a child’s right to secure home is not respected and children cannot travel to school safely. The AU needs to work with its members to shift towards a reality where all rights are respected collectively, rather than parceled off on a piecemeal basis.

Any union is only successful if it respects the values that bind it together. What good is it for a man to sit on a committee against domestic violence and then go home and beat his wife? The power in a union is a commitment to shared values, and practicing what you preach. 

On Africa Unity day we call for the AU to practice what they preach and use this union for good. We petition them to connect better across the physical and political borders of its members and act in solidarity to fulfil the human rights commitment it has made to Africans across the continent.

Alison Picton, Human Rights Advocacy, CHRI Africa
Also published on modern ghana - click here

Tuesday 24 May 2011

So what is wrong with the draft RTI bill?

On Monday The Coalition on the Right to Information (chaired by CHRI) held a press conference with Ghana’s Parliamentary Press Corps on the RTI bill. This was the first significant publicity campaign since its participation in the International Labor Day Protests.

The day was used to educate the press on the RTI bill and canvass their support in the push to get the bill passed through Parliament. It was also used as a platform to raise concerns about the bill in its current form.

So what is wrong with the current bill?

                1. Exemptions to the right to information should only be justified on legitimate grounds. The bill in its current form is overly broad, and provides for blanket exemptions of certain departments. The correct way to determine whether the information should be exempted is the “harm test”—whether the information will cause harm to the public interest, and that harm outweighs the interest in disclosure.

                2. The timeline provided by the bill for disclosure of information is unduly long.  Under the current regime, a citizen could wait up to 21 days just to find out if the information will be disclosed, and up to half of a year to finally get the information.

                3. The bill does not recognize the importance of a robust recordkeeping scheme. Even the best RTI bill will fail if there are no records from which to draw information.

                4. Certain private bodies should be accountable under the bill automatically. This determination should not be left to the discretion of the Minister for Justice.

                5. The current appellate process for request denials is too arduous. Rather than channeling appeals through the Minister of the department, and then to the Supreme Court, the Coalition suggested an independent tribunal to evaluate appeals. This tribunal, the Information Commission, would also help educate the Ghanaian citizenry about their rights under the bill.

                6. The fee schedules in the bill exceed the bounds of what it would actually cost to produce the information, which hinders the request process. The current fee schedule does not recognize that most people in Ghana cannot afford to pay the fees, especially considering that if a request for information is denied, the fee paid to obtain that information is not returned.

Photos: Top: Johnathan Osei-Owusi from POS Foundation opens the Confernece. Below: Nana Oye Lithur from the human Rights Advocacy Centre discusses one of the points of the bill in finer detail.
 See what the press had to say about the day….

Nina Decker, RTI Intern, CHRI Africa

Anti Terror Laws: Democratic Oppression?


Saturday the 21st of May marked the annual world Anti- Terrorism Day. The Day is designed to spread the message of global peace, deter vulnerable youth from following cult practices, commemorate the victims of terrorism and honour the sacrifices made by soldiers who have battled against it.

Tackling terrorism, an act “meant to inflict dramatic and deadly injury on civilians and to create an atmosphere of fear for political or ideological purposes”, has been a global priority since the 9/11 attacks in New York. Weeks after 9/11 the UN passed resolution 1373 which committed all countries to combating international terrorism. This has been followed by the imposition of various national anti terror laws.

This year’s Anti - Terrorism day was particularly significant as it was the first since Osama Bin Laden’s death. As the recent bombings in Morocco, Iraq and Afghanistan have shown, terrorist violence is far from over. However Bin Ladens’s death presents an opportunity for the world to consider its response to global terror. It is time to revisit the debate of whether the cost of surrendering civil liberties in anti terror laws is a price worth paying.

In Africa in particular anti terror laws often repress rather than protect citizens. Terror legislation gives special dispensation for governments to bypass their constitutional and international obligations when national security is judged to be under threat. These laws concentrate great power which can be open to misuse. Governments have the potential to use anti terror laws to maintain themselves in power and silence democratic opposition. This threatens fundamental rights to free speech, privacy and a fair trial.

We see a clear example of this in Uganda where, a blanket ban against all forms of public assemblies and demonstrations has been in place since February, on grounds of ensuring “public security”. President Museveni declared a national emergency when the main opposition leader Kizza Besigye disputed the results of the February general election and called upon his followers to protest against the government. Subsequently the country has been rocked by unrest as peaceful protests have been met with brutal zero tolerance policing. Besigye remains under house arrest for attempting to hold a new wave “walk to work” protests.

Elsewhere in the continent anti terror laws allow power to accumulate in the hands of government. Nigeria passed an Anti Terror Law in March 2011, giving security forces far reaching powers to intercept communications and search property without a warrant. The law also allows judges to detain suspects for 30 days if they feel it is in the interests of “public safety”. Tanzania’s 2002 Prevention of Terrorism Act gives immigration officers the power, without warrant, to arrest any person suspected to have been involved in international terrorism. The low, or in many cases, non-existent levels of evidence required in order to satisfy these legal tests not only runs the risk of abusing people’s rights to privacy and freedom from arbitrary arrest, but can be seen to authorize such abuses. The use of anti terror legislation in this way could not be further from the purpose in which it was designed, and makes a mockery of the commitments made by these two states to protect human rights.

Another way we see governments using anti terror legislation as a tool for repression is in the limitations it imposes on freedom of expression. Journalists frequently face the possibility having their messages suppressed by governments enacting these laws. In The Gambia journalists regularly find themselves faced with surveillance, police charges, arbitrary arrests and even death threats if they criticise Jammeh’s regime. Similarly in Zimbabwe six foreign journalists reporting on the country’s 2001 political unrest were arrested on terrorism charges.

Anti terror laws are necessary but it is important that they are used responsibly. African governments must not be allowed to abandon their constitutional obligations and hide under the cloak of national security. Society must continue to hold governments to account and ensure that anti terror legislation is used to protect rather than pose a threat to democracy.

Henry Wilkinson, CHRI Africa. www.chriafrica.blogspot.com

Published in The Accra Times, Wednesday May 25th 2011 p.7. also published in The Ghanian Times, Tuesday 31st of May 2011 p.11

Friday 20 May 2011

African Commonwealth Human Rights Weekly Update (14/05 - 20/05/2011)

Tuesday 17/05: Bizimungu convicted if War Crimes: Former Rwandan army chief Augustin Bizimungu has been sentenced to 30 years in prison for his role in the 1994 genocide. Until his capture in Angola in 2002, Bizimungu was the most wanted man in connection with the 1994 genocide.
The 59-year-old was on trial in a specially commissioned court in Tanzania. The judge ruled that he had control of forces that carried out the widespread rape and killing of Tutsis and Hutu moderates.
In the 100 days of genocide an estimated 800,000 Rwandan’s lost their life

The Seychelles
Monday 15/05: Observer Group to be dispatched: Commonwealth Secretary Gereal Kamalesh Sharma announced on Monday that a commonwealth observer team will be dispatched to the Indian Ocean state for the Presidential election which take place between the 19-21 of May.
The team will be headed by the former foreign minister of St Lucia, Dr Julian Hunte.

Saturday 14/05: Political Activists Arrested: The Swaziland Democracy Campaign, a South Africa based organisation pushing for greater political freedoms in Swaziland, report that a number of trade unionists have been arbitrarily arrested. They report that on Saturday members of the new democratic trade union federation, The Trade Union Congress of Swaziland (TUCOSWA) were arrested and detained by police after attending a meeting in the Lubombo Region.
TOCOSWA was launched on May Day of this year and brings all trade unions in Swaziland into a single organisation. Political parties are banned in Swaziland and trade unions remain the main source of organised opposition to King Mswati’s autocratic state.
On Sunday the funeral of political activist Sipo Jele ended in ugly scenes when police ripped a flag of the banned political party, People’s United Democratic Movement (PUDEMO) and arrested three mourners wearing PUDEMO T-shirts.

Saturday 14/05: Bushfire Festival Boycott Still on: The Swaziland Solidarity Network, reiterated that it will boycott the Bushfire Music Festival which will be held in Malkerns between 27-29 May. The event is due to feature artists from USA, Canada, South Africa, Mozambique, Mali, Zimbabwe, Botswana and France as well as local acts from Swaziland.

The Swaziland Solidarity Network has asked called artists to refuse to attend and has called on Swaziland to be isolated from the cultural mainstream (similar to what happened to Apartheid South Africa). However, Swazilands other large civil society campaign group, The Swaziland Democracy Campaign has called off its boycott after meeting with event organisers. They claim that the the event provides an opportunity for young Swazi musicians to get international exposure.

Sunday 15/05: Swaziland Referred to the African Court on Human People’s Rights: The Sunday Times an independent newspaper in Swaziland, reported on Sunday that the African NGO Forum has referred Swaziland to the African Union’s African Court on Human People’s Rights (ACHRP).
The Swazi Government is accused of violating nine separate articles of the African Charter. In particular the ACHPR is being urged to call on Swaziland to stop police brutality, arbitrary detentions and torture. Swaziland is being urged to amend the Suppression of Terrorism Act and repeal the Sedition and Subversive Activities Act.

Thursday 19/05: Besigye Under House Arrest: Ugandan opposition leader Kizza Besigye has been prevented from leaving his house by police as the new parliamentary session opens. The police claim his was planning to cause unrest and call his detention “a preventative arrest”.

Thursday 19 May 2011

LGBT Situation in Africa

Reports that new the anti homosexuality bill could be debated in the Ugandan Parliament last Friday appear to have been false. Nonetheless gay rights remain a very contentious issue in Africa at the moment.

Last year a gay couple in Malawi were sentenced to 14 years in jail for attempting to conduct a gay marriage whilst in March of this year Roger Jean-Claude Mbede was imprisoned for three years in Cameroon for being homosexual.
Seventeen of the nineteen African Commonwealth criminalise sexual practices not thought proper. (South Africa and Rwanda are the only two who do not). Most countries use a variation of the sodomy laws from the colonial era. The typical sodomy law criminalises a man performing an “unnatural act” upon any man or woman, as well as any man or woman that allows a man to perform an “unnatural act” upon them.  An important factor of these provisions is that they negate the possibility of males suffering rape, unless as a minor, making the LGBT population vulnerable. The victims would potentially be criminalised for allowing a man to perform unnatural acts upon them.

Throughout the African members of the Commonwealth Christianity and Islam are prominent religions. Religious texts are clear in the condemnation of those who engage in same sex relations and these religious views have continued to inform the laws on the African homosexual community.

The London office of CHRI are currently doing some great research on LGBT issues throughout the Commonwealth, and are hoping to draft an official report soon. In the meantime we are going to give regular summaries of their research, in particular the legislation directed towards homosexuals. To start off with here is the status in relation to homosexuality in Uganda.

Law that makes Homosexuality illegal

The Penal Code Act of 1950 (Chapter 120)[1]

Section 145 criminalises carnal knowledge of any person against the order of nature or of an animal; or permitting a male person to have carnal knowledge of him or her against the order of nature.  Whoever is guilty of this felony is liable to imprisonment for life.

Under section 146 any person who attempts to commit any of the offences specified in section 145 commits a felony and is liable to imprisonment for seven years.

Under section 147 it is an offence to unlawfully and indecently assault a boy under the age of eighteen.  Whoever commits this felony is liable to imprisonment for fourteen years, with or without corporal punishment.

Under section 148 it is an offence for any person who, whether in public or in private, commits any act of gross indecency with another person or who procures, or attempts to procure, another person to commit any act of gross indecency with him or her.  Whoever commits this offence is liable to imprisonment for seven years.

Under section 123 rape is defined as unlawful carnal knowledge of a woman or girl, without her consent, or with her consent if the consent is obtained by force or by means of threats, intimidation, or false representation.

Under section 124 a person convicted of rape is liable to suffer death.

Under section 125 any person who attempts to commit rape commits a felony and is liable to imprisonment for life with or without corporal punishment.
Practical Consequences of the Law

SMUG – Sexual Minorities Uganda came together so as to create one big strong LGBT community in Uganda; to provide the LGBT community with organized representation so as to achieve a liberated LGBT community.

In 2010, the Ugandan newspaper The Rolling Stone was guilty of exposing the faces of members of the LGBT community within Uganda. David Kato, a gay activist and the advocacy officer for SMUG was one of three complainants who sought and succeeded in being granted an injunction which had the effect of preventing the newspaper from exposing details such as addresses and names. On Wednesday 26th of January, David was murdered just weeks after his victory in court. It was revealed that for weeks David had been harassed and was threatened on several occasions, being told that he would be dealt with.[2]

Constitutional Clause on Equality or Right to Privacy

Constitution of the Republic of Uganda, 1995[3]

Article 21 protects equality, whereby all persons are equal before and under the law in all spheres of political, economic, social and cultural life and in every other respect and shall enjoy equal protection of the law. A person shall not be discriminated against on the ground of sex, race, colour, ethnic origin, tribe, birth, creed or religion, social or economic standing, political opinion or disability, where ‘discriminate’ is defined as giving different treatment to different persons attributable only or mainly to their respective descriptions by sex, race, colour, ethnic origin, tribe, birth, creed or religion, social or economic standing, political opinion or disability.

Article 27 protects the right to privacy of person, home and other property, whereby no person shall be subjected to unlawful search of the person, home or other property; unlawful entry by others of the premises of that person; or interference with the privacy of that person’s home, correspondence, communication or other property.