By Emmanuel Luganda and Samuel Lutwama
Internal Affairs minister Gen. Aronda Nyakayirima has asked Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) to train police to preserve the rights of citizens when carrying out their tasks.
In his speech read by the permanent secretary, Ministry of Internal Affairs Steven Kagoda, Aronda said that law governing bodies like police violate people's rights because some of them are not aware of their rights.
"We have seen some video clips of police officers beating up and manhandling people on Television yet they are supposed to keep law and order," Aronda said.
Speaking at East and Horn of Africa Human Rights Defenders Network Project (EHAHRDP) and the Pan-African Human Rights Defenders Network (PAHRDN) function where they launched two new projects, Aronda urged the central and local governments to always listen to what the citizens say.
"Dialogue and information are vital if we are to curb the violations of human rights. During Amin's regime, talking about human rights was a crime hence killing of innocent Ugandans was the order of the day," he added.
East and Horn of Africa Human Rights defenders during the launch of the Netherlands and Austria funded project to support human rights defenders in Africa at Human Rights house, Nsambya on February 13, 2015. PHOTO/Tony Rujuta
The two projects funded by the Netherlands Embassy and the Austrian Development Cooperation will contribute to the safer working conditions of the Human Rights Defenders (HRDs) which reflected the commitment of the Dutch and the Austrian governments towards protection and promotion of human rights in Uganda and across Africa.
The three-year 'protection and safety for Human Rights Defenders in Uganda' project funded by a Euro 990, 000 grant will strengthen and support the National Coalition of Human Rights Defenders in Uganda (NCHRD-U).
The Netherland Ambassador to Uganda, Alphons Hennekens said that Human Rights is a long standing and a key pillar of the Dutch foreign policy and within Dutch Human Rights policy.
"The safety and protection of Human Rights Defenders need to remain a top priority on the human rights agenda," said Theo Oltheten who delivered the speech on behalf of the Netherlands Ambassador.
The NCHRD-U, established in 2013, represents a National wide cross section of Civil Society in Uganda.
The 'protection and safety program for human rights defenders in Africa project is also funded by a two-year Euro 360,000 grant from the Austrian Development Cooperation.
The project will focus on supporting and equipping Sub-regional human rights defenders network across Africa with tools to protect HRDs, conduct research into their operating environment and to conduct National, regional and International Advocacy.
Simone Knapp, Head of the Austrian Development Cooperation stressed that the promotion and protection of Human Rights is a key feature of the policy of the Austrian Development Cooperation.
"Today, we expect governments not only to respect and protect human rights within their own territory, but to support the realization of rights and freedom around the world," she said.
Internal Affairs minister asks CSOs to train police in human rights