Ugandan Gov’t ends UN Human Rights office mandate
By AFAYO SHADRACH BETHEL
The government has terminated the operations of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights in Uganda.
The Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, a department of the United Nations Secretariat, is mandated to promote and protect the enjoyment and full realization by all people, of all rights established in the Charter of the United Nations and in international human rights laws and treaties.
The office was established in Kampala in 2006, with the initial mandate focused on the human rights situation in the conflict-affected areas of Northern and North-Eastern Uganda but it was renewed in 2009 and expanded to cover the entire country and all human rights issues.
The office has been in talks with the Government of Uganda about the modalities of a continued presence in the country. On January 4, 2023, the office sent to the permanent mission of the Republic of Uganda to the United Nations Office in Geneva an application for the renewal of the Host Country Agreement between the Government of Uganda and OHCHR.
But the Ministry of Foreign Affairs says that given the strong government commitment to the promotion and protection of human rights, the prevailing peace throughout the country, coupled with strong National Human Rights Institutions and a vibrant civil society- with the capacity to monitor the promotion and protection of human rights throughout the country, it can no longer renew the mandate beyond the current term.