CEHURD preaches gender justice and Sexual Reproductive Health in Busoga

Ms Dhafa Esther, a pleader at CEHURD making her submissions during the Judicial colloquim last Wednesday

Iganga, (UG): The Center for Human Rights and Development (CEHURD) have amplified the voice for gender justice and Sexual Reproductive Health (SRH) in the Busoga subregion by bringing a number of stakeholders on board to iron out issues of sexual violence.

The colloquium which was conducted under the theme of Utilizing the judicial pen to advance gender justice and Sexual Reproductive Health (SRH) in Uganda saw a number of judicial officers including lawyers involved and other stakeholders like police, community development officers (CDOs), probation officers, all from the two districts of Namutumba and Iganga.

A number of gender justice and transformative approaches were discussed and the participants pledged to work with CEHURD Uganda in enhancing gender justice and Sexual Reproductive Health given the increasing number of cases among other teenage pregnancies and early marriages in the eastern subregion.

During the judicial colloquium held last week on Wednesday, Aug 16, at Hotel Continental in Iganga town, Ms Dhafa Esther, a pleader in CEHURD Uganda said the poverty levels have triggered the issues of sexual violence in the region and that other people have not joined hands in fighting the injustices which sometimes causes a decline in fighting the injustices.

“The most important point to note and deal with is that poverty has turned to be the triggering factor leading to issues like gender injustices particularly domestic violence in Busoga and we discovered a number of cases in Iganga and Namutumba districts that’s why we decided to camp in these districts. We call upon you all to work with us collectively in ensuring a gender justice society,” Ms Dhafa said.

Iganga High Court resident judge, Justice David Batema pledged to steer up the campaign to ensure that the issues hindering gender justice progress can be minimized. He says they will try to ensure that issues of domestic violence are eliminated and rights of women are promoted.

“As judicial officers, we shall ensure that the campaign against gender injustice is dealt with and I pledge to advocate for women’s rights as well as issues of sexual and reproductive health. We shall continue to ensure that justice prevails as a way of supporting the campaign,” Justice Batema said.

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Iganga High Court Judge, H/W Justice David Batema speaking to judicial officers and key stakeholders during the judicial colloquium

The CEHURD coordinator Mr Sserunjogi Francis says they are developing community health assistants in Iganga and Namutumba who will spread the gospel on health matters and ensure that people’s rights in regard to sexual reproductive health are maintained.

“We’re training community health assistants in Iganga district and Namutumba district with the aim of equipping these people with information, who will later disseminate it to the public to ensure a gender justice area with a reduced number of cases of domestic violence and other related cases,” Mr Sserunjogi said, adding that the team will be ready by next year to execute work diligently.

A section of justice actors and other key stakeholders who attended the colloquium

One of the beneficiaries of the colloquium who spoke to this publication on condition of anonymity commended the team from CEHURD Uganda for helping her recently by entering a matter where her daughter was defiled by a certain man in Nakavule, Iganga town.

She says the organization enabled the process and the suspect was arrested and prosecuted.

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The team from CEHURD led by Mr Sserunjogi pledged to continue organizing more trainings in different areas of Busoga citing that a number of locals are persecuted hence calling upon other organizations to join hands in ensuring a community where the rights of the people are prioritized in gender justice and Sexual Reproductive Health consideration.

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