Chapter Four closed by Ugandan authorities
30 augustus 2021

Chapter Four closed by Ugandan authorities


Lawyers for Lawyers has received concerning reports that the Uganda-based NGO Chapter Four has been closed by the Ugandan authorities.

Chapter Four is a civil rights charity working to defend human rights and civil liberties in Uganda at which many lawyers are active. Chapter Four was closed on 20 August 2021 by the NGO Bureau. Lawyers for Lawyers has earlier reported on the arrest of its executive, lawyer Nicholas Opiyo.

In Lawyers for Lawyer’s submission for the Universal Periodic Review of Uganda last July, Lawyers for Lawyers already raised concern about the new NGO Act that established the NGO Bureau. Under this Act, the NGO Bureau has the power to revoke an NGO’s permit and overall has very broad competences to stop NGOs from performing their functions without independent judicial oversight. The closing of Chapter Four hampers the lawyers connected to the charity in carrying out their professional duties.

As stated in the UPR submission, L4L is concerned that the NGO Act does not only hamper the work of NGOs, but also that of lawyers working with NGOs. Several lawyers interviewed by L4L indicated that NGOs are generally viewed negatively by the state and, consequently, so are the lawyers working with NGOs. This is especially the case for NGOs and lawyers working on politically sensitive cases.


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