By Mark Kawalya
Reporting human rights issues in Uganda is set to become easier and more convenient after the development of a new application that will facilitate case reporting. Launched by the Human Rights Commission, the UHRC application will be inclusive, as it will enable members of the public from different districts in Uganda to report human rights abuses. The app will be useful as it can be used by people in last mile areas that do not have easy access to authorities.
“Previously, apps were pioneered largely by businesses. But we are increasingly seeing how important they are for dispensing information on human rights to enable citizens to enjoy, defend and claim their rights when they are violated. Apps have expanded the options that existed and are now facilitating the enhancement and access to health and education services, justice, and association rights such as family interactions, mobilization for political and social causes,” said UHRC chairperson Mariam Wangadya during the launch.
Wangadya added that human rights are fundamental and should be safeguarded using both online and offline frameworks. The new application will be critical in helping citizens engage in real-time information exchange and engagement by facilitating the faster lodging of complaints by eliminating the need to first travel to the human rights body offices.
“We have faith in the benefits that the UHRC App will bring to our service delivery and to the enjoyment of human rights generally.” Mariam said.
Wangadya noted that the new application demonstrates the Uganda Human Rights Commission’s forward-thinking approach to supporting the promotion and protection of human rights in the country.
Dr. Chris Baryomunsi, the Minister for ICT and National Guidance, commended the Uganda Human Rights Commission for the steps taken in developing the application that will play an integral role in reporting human rights abuses.
“Besides this, a quick look at the app shows that, it will enhance physical accessibility to UHRC service offices all over the country for those who wish to access the offices physically since the location and contacts are provided on the app,” Dr. Baryomunsi said.
“It will further provide useful links to legal services and available redress mechanisms for human rights violations, which is in line with the government’s priority to ease service delivery to the people of Uganda.” he added.