Former DP diehard Shifra Lukwago and civil society advocate Crispin Kaheru have vowed to blow the whistle on acts human rights abuses by the state despite their new roles as board members of the Uganda Human Rights Commission (UHRC).
The two made the remarks shortly after being vetted by the parliamentary commission to join Mariam Wangadya on the UHRC board.
Kaheru and Lukwago, now UHRC commissioners, have for years championed for an end of human rights abuses.
They now sit on the same board of a body whose inaction they often criticised.
Speaking to NBS TV, Kaheru said that his new role will not stop him from condemning human rights abuses in the country.
“We will continue to condemn the human rights abuses and this platform will not distract from the fight for the rights of Ugandans,” Kaheru said.
Shifra Lukwago promised to use her new role to continue to fight against human rights violations.
She said, “I will serve to the best of my ability as I have been representing many activists in court, I will put everything in practice”.
The duo also promised to visit all detention centres in the country and all persons implicated in violation of human rights will the summoned.
The promises have been welcomed by Opposition Chief Whip and member of the Appointments Committee of parliament, John Baptist Nambeshe.
Nambeshe said that, “Our eyes as parliament and opposition will closely monitor them (Kaheru and Shifra) and see if they are walking the talk they previously championed in their crusades.”
The chairperson of Uganda Human Rights Commission Mariam Wangadya and Father Simon Lokodo noted that government needs to work on improving its human rights record.
Father Simon Lokodo said that Uganda’s image on human rights had been dented abroad and, “We have an uphill task to talk to the authority to phase out acts of human rights abuses.”
The commission has been in limbo since the untimely demise of their chairperson Meddie Kagwa in 2019.