Statement by the National Coordinator for HRNJ-Uganda, Mr. Robert Ssempala, on the International Day in Support of Victims of Torture, 26 June 2014
Kampala, June 26, 2014; On this day June 26, 2014, Human Rights Network for Journalists-Uganda (HRNJ-Uganda) wishes to remember all those colleagues –Ugandans and non-Ugandans in the media fraternity and the entire world community that have experienced this serious inhumane and degrading human rights violation.
Recalling that all human rights instruments at the national, regional and international levels condemn this vice, we at HRNJ-Uganda wish to add our voice to the many that have put out a stark reminder to all perpetrators of torture in the world but particularly in Uganda. We, in a special way wish to acknowledge the tenacious efforts by all key stakeholders in Uganda to bring to book the perpetrators of this violation; key amongst them is the Uganda Human Rights Commission, United Nations office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, Africa Center for Torture Victims (ACTV), East and Horn of Africa Human Rights Defenders, Human Rights Network-Uganda and last but not least the journalists and all media houses among many others.
On this day, in a special way, HRNJ-Uganda wishes to express its support to all victims of torture, and to this end, we recommend the following to the Government of Uganda, thus;
1. To uphold Human Rights as enshrined in the Constitution of the Republic of Uganda and other human rights treaties that it is a party to
2. Bring to book all perpetrators of torture in the country regardless of their status or affiliations
3. Ensure that journalists are free and safe from any acts of torture at all times in the course of their work
4. Sensitize the public about torture and its dire effects on the victims, and or their families in case of death
5. Pass all enabling legislations that will end impunity to perpetrators of torture and violate human rights
6. All Ugandans should stand up against acts of torture at all levels.
Torture is a backward inhumane and degrading treatment which must be fought by everyone at all times.