KAMPALA, Uganda – On December 14, 2020, Uganda Network on Law, Ethics & HIV/AIDS (UGANET) hosted a 2-day symposium dubbed Judicial Dialogue on HIV, TB Human Rights and TB through adjudication at the Protea Hotel by Marriott, Entebbe.
The symposium that is running under the theme ‘Creating an Enabling Environment for People Living with HIV and TB through adjudication’ has seen over 20 magistrates in attendance on the first day.
Just like the first symposiums that UGANET hosted at the same hotel, which over 100 Members of Parliament graced, the symposium’s main objective is to get solutions to the problem of HIV discrimination and criminalization in Uganda.
According to Immaculate B. Owomugisha, Head Litigation & Advocacy at UGANET,” Members of the bench are critical to the discussion on HIV, TB and the Law because they are the ones who judge and adjudicate cases.”
To show this, Professor Ben Twinomugisha, a Lecturer & Senior Law Academician, took the members of the bench through scanning of the legal environment at international, regional, and national levels.
He also went ahead to talk about the gaps in the National Legal and Human Rights Framework on HIV in Uganda.
“This is intended to bring you, as judicial officers, up to speed about what needs to be changed and given attention to in the existing Laws on HIV. In the end, we expect to earn your backing in our endeavour to amend these laws.” Prof Twinomugisha said.
Besides, Lady Justice Elizabeth Nahamya (Rtd) also introduced to the members of the bench, a judicial handbook on HIV, Human Rights, and the Law.
She gave them an overview after which they deliberated in groups on the way forward in form of solutions for the various dilemmas and loopholes in the law on HIV. The four working groups are discussing areas of’
- The international law pertaining to HIV/AIDS
- National laws relating to HIV/AIDS
- About the HIV/AIDS adjudicated cases in Uganda
- The judicial handbook
The symposium will end on December 15, 2020, with an evaluation of the action points that the members of the bench have agreed upon with UGANET and its partners.
Through the dialogue, UGANET aims to commit the Judiciary and other government stakeholders to better the lives of Persons Living with HIV in Uganda, especially by facilitating and getting rid of the rampant acts of criminalizing and stigmatizing them.
UGANET is a non-governmental organization that was established in 1995 to bring together organizations and individuals who are interested in advocating for the development and strengthening of an appropriate policy, legal, human rights, and ethical response to Health and HIV/AIDS in Uganda.