todayApril 1, 2024

UHRC hearing a case during the tribunal that sat in Arua Regional Office. Photo by Sabir Musa

By Sabir Musa


A total of eight cases were dismissed by Uganda Human Rights Commission (UHRC) during the 2-days tribunal to hear 15-cases reported across the region.

These cases include violation of the right to freedom from torture and violation of right to personal liberty that entails detention beyond 48 hours, for reasons ranging from contradicting evidences submitted by complainants, inadequate medical evidence and failure by complainants to reveal cause of action.

Director in-charge of Complaints, Investigations and Legal Services at the commission, Ida Nakiganda explains that, most of the evidences submitted by complainants were not clear and giving contradicting information especially dates.

“A complainant may have given the commission evidence at beginning of case as it has been investigated through his/her statement but then when they come before tribunal, they now contradict evidence they gave especially when it comes to dates. It is very important that you are consistent when mentioning (for example) date of arrest and date of release especially in matter that involve arrest beyond 48-hours.” the Director explained.

Uganda Human Rights Commission was conducting a 2-days tribunal session at Arua Regional Office with the aim of reducing existing case backlogs with other cases reported as early as 2013.

The commission’s Chairperson, Mariam Wangadya adviced that witnesses should be used for some of the torture cases where medical evidence cannot be submitted to prevent contradicting evidence.

“Let everyone know that it is not a legal requirement that every case of torture must be supported by medical evidence. Where there is no such evidence, let’s go by the evidence of witnesses,” she advised.

One of the cases dismissed during the tribunal involved 11 complainants who alleged that they were tortured by police in Ariwa Sub-County, located in Yumbe District by 2013. This case was dismissed after the health worker representing the complaints submitted documents with unclear information about him.

While speaking to Radio Pacis after the session, one of the complaints, Linus Ambayo expressed disappointment that it was his second time of coming at the commission’s regional office which he said requires a lot of transport.

A total of 8 cases were dismissed over inadequate medical evidence and failure by complainants to reveal cause of action in 2-days tribunal.

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