Monday 11, 2016

 

We the women of Uganda from different walks of life - NGOs, Faith Based Organizations, academia, business, political parties and many others gathered here today under the umbrella of the Women’s Democracy Group would like to express our deepest concern at the increasing level of political violence and intolerance which is countering citizens’ aspirations for peace, inclusion and genuine democracy.

The political clashes that occurred for example in Ntungamo, Gulu, and Bukwo between police, political parties and their supporters are increasing in frequency and its effects are spilling over into the citizenry. While political conflict destroys both men and women's lives, it is apparent that women are often the more vulnerable group.

Violence can lead to injuries, disability and even death. In addition, sexual violence such as rape and harassment frequently occur during political conflicts and has a traumatic impact on women's wellbeing. Women usually bear a heavy burden during and after political violence to support their families[1].

Violence also scares women from participating in the  elections due to fear of being physically harassed or harmed.

Therefore, as women we strongly condemn and shall not tolerate any form of violence before, during and after elections by all actors.

Uganda’s political history is marked with violent coups, numerous armed rebellions and lack of political accountability fuelled by an absence of viable political structures allowing for the free entry and exit from the political process, as well as inadequate channels to express grievances or disaffection

As a multi-party democracy, with this in hindsight, we demand as follows;

  • We call upon all political actors including candidates to use their voice to call for peace and unity ahead of the elections;
  • Call upon supporters of political parties and candidates  to refrain from any processes that breed intolerance and violent conflicts;
  • We call upon government to urge its institutions such as the police to ensure utmost impartiality by working strictly within the law;
  • We call upon the Uganda Police Force to update Ugandans on the electoral related cases that are currently being investigated by the police.
  • Call upon the youth, men and women to desist from being lured into militias/vigilante groups by politicians but to concentrate in exercising their rights to participate in electoral process and eventually in electing the candidates of their choice for various elective positions in the 2016 general elections. It is important for citizens to remember that after elections, we will have to live together and continue developing Uganda our beloved country.

 

MY COUNTRY, MY DUTY!

UNITED WOMEN CAN!

FOR GOD AND MY COUNTRY

 

© WDN Uganda Chapter 2014