A Case of Retreating Horizons and Worsening Circumstances? Annual State of Constitutionalism in Uganda in 2015
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The state of constitutionalism in Uganda in 2015 calls for an analysis of various events and actions across the three arms of government. Twenty years into the promulgation of the 1995 Constitution, this chapter conducts a juxtaposition of some of the events and decisions through the historical lens of what the expectations, aspirations and wishes of the people of Uganda were, and whether these are being met today. It is apparent that although much progress has been made, there is a lot of mileage to cover and in some instances, troubling strides in regression to recover from. There are many notable instances from 2015 in which it became more apparent how intertwined the functions of the three arms of government are in the Ugandan context. Divided into five other parts, the chapter evaluates each arm of government. The next part discusses the performance of the Executive arm of government and highlights a number of missed opportunities and reflects on some of the key challenges through the year. The next part discusses the performance of the legislature and interrogates the hypothesis that 2015 was largely a year of retreating horizons for this crucial arm of government. In its evaluation of the judiciary, the third part of the paper takes stock of major landmark decisions, highlighting the crucial progress that the courts have made in advancing the much needed culture of constitutionalism, but also pointing to areas in which the courts may need to take a more progressive approach in their adjudication of human rights. The paper also points to some challenges that have become so notorious that they deserve no further elaboration. The discourse on human rights and constitutionalism is advancing on new forms of media is an emerging area to which and more attention will need to be paid. In highlighting how new media forms are providing a new frontier, this chapter evaluates a few key events and hopefully tickles interest into these areas. Key events on the political scene are analyzed in order to evaluate Uganda’s progress in furthering good governance and human rights on a politically charged landscape. Before reaching the conclusion that the developments of 2015 left a trying realization that there is more ground to cover, the chapter highlights the areas in which a lot of work will have to be done in future, so as to foster the progress of constitutionalism in Uganda.
- Social Sciences