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UDHR National Dialogue highlights elimination of gender norms

Participants in the UDHR National Dialogue

Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT |  The National Dialogue commemorating 75 years of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) highlighted the urgency of challenging gender norms to combat gender-based violence, standing as a key point of discussion. Officials from various sectors including Uganda Prisons, the electoral commission, the Judiciary, the army, human rights defenders, and activists convened at the Sheraton Hotel in Kampala on Monday for this event.

Laura Criado, the program coordinator at the United Nations Fund for Population Activities (UNFPA), emphasized the pivotal role of government, cultural, and religious leaders in recognizing that entrenched gender norms contribute significantly to high rates of gender-based violence and teenage pregnancies. She stressed that societal norms can’t change instantly and advocated for a collaborative effort involving civil society organizations, religious leaders, government, and cultural institutions to address these ingrained issues.

Criado commended Uganda for enacting laws and policies promoting gender equality but noted a significant gap in implementing these laws to provide necessary services, especially at the grassroots level. Richard Butera, the deputy chief justice, urged all organs of state, civil society, and justice systems to prioritize protecting human rights and upholding the rule of law. He emphasized that such efforts were crucial for Uganda to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals and Vision 2040.

Dr. Zahara Nampewo, Executive Director of the Human Rights and Peace Centre (HURIPEC), called for Uganda’s commitment to observing all human rights. She highlighted the country’s persisting challenges, including high maternal mortality rates and numerous unaddressed issues despite the 61 years of its independence.

Shifrah Lukwago, a commissioner at the Uganda Human Rights Commission (UHRC), emphasized the government’s responsibility to support the human rights commission in fulfilling its mandate, stressing that Uganda’s constitution is a reflection of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, now marking 75 years.

The dialogue’s theme focused on women’s access to justice, aligning with the broader goal of uniting efforts and investments to prevent violence against women and girls. It underscored the need for collective action and policy enforcement to address ingrained gender norms and ensure the protection of human rights for all Ugandans.

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One comment

  1. These ones are just joking.

    Universal Declaration of Human Rights? In Uganda?

    They can even be picked from their homes at night because of promoting human rights.

    They are joking just.

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