Oral statement Uganda UPR outcome
1 juli 2022

Oral statement Uganda UPR outcome


On 1 July 2022, Lawyers for Lawyers delivered an oral statement during the 50th Session of the UN Human Rights Council. During this session, the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) Outcome Report of Uganda was adopted. Lawyers for Lawyers had already submitted a submission for the UPR-session of Uganda.

The statement reads as follows:

Mr President,

Lawyers for Lawyers welcomes Uganda’s stated commitment to the protection of human rights, and its recognition of the important role NGO’s hold in advancing democracy. However, we are concerned that Uganda has refrained from accepting any of the numerous recommendations concerning the protection of human rights defenders, including lawyers.

This is particularly worrying, considering a fundamental aspect of the protection of human rights, and by extension the rule of law, is the effective functioning of an independent legal profession. Lawyers must be able to carry out their professional duties without harassment, intimidation, or improper interference. In light of the many problems faced by the Ugandan legal community, the continued absence of measures to adequately address such issues affects lawyers’ ability to fulfil their professional duties.

Such issues include the harassment of lawyers, a lack of access to clients, lack of lawyer-client confidentiality, identification of lawyers with their clients, and the situation of lawyers working for NGOs. We have also received reports of lawyers facing harassment or persecution due to their involvement in human rights, LGBTQ+, environmental and politically sensitive cases.

Therefore we urge Uganda to:

  • Implement the recommendations with regards to the protection of human rights defenders without delay;
  • Take effective and immediate measures to combat the harassment and persecution of lawyers due to their work; and
  • Take effective and immediate measures to guarantee lawyers’ access to their clients, confidential communications with these clients, and to prevent lawyers from being identified with their clients.

Thank you, Mr. President.

See recording of statement at UN Web TV: https://media.un.org/en/asset/k1k/k1knzjpzr2 (39:00 min)

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