The Uganda Human Rights Commission (UHRC) has called on His Excellency President Yoweri Museveni to take action on the issue of the law against citizens who are using harsh words against others.
The UHRC Chairperson, Mariam Wangadya, while speaking to journalists on Thursday at the commission’s office, stated that discrimination and sectarianism are on the increase.
“I also want all organs of state to pronounce themselves on where they stand on hate speech because, honestly, it’s on the increase. I also wish his excellency the president to pronounce himself on this issue,” Wangadya stated.
Wangadya also reminded Ugandans that sectarianism is a crime punishable by law.
“I also want to remind the country that sectarianism is a crime under Section 41 of the Penal Code Act,” she said.
She further requested that the police start enforcing the law immediately.
“And I want to request the police and the office of the Director of Public Prosecutions to start enforcing this law immediately,” she said.
UHRC summoned Gilbert Olanya, the Kilak South Member of Parliament, for alleged hateful speech intended to incite violence against the Balaalo community in the Acholi Sub-region.
This followed a video that went viral more than a week ago, where Olanya, while meeting some Acholi community members, incited them against the Balalo herdsmen, who are said to have taken over their land in Acholi.
Wangadya said that in the video, Olanya said that the Balaalo must go, leave Acholi land, and that the people of Acholi should rise and chase Balaalo (pastoralists) off their land.