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The Ben Kiwanuka memorial lecture drew participation of several high ranking law makers, religious leaders, judicial officials and politicians from Kampala. Notably present at the event were the German Ambassador to Uganda H.E Reinhard Buchholz, Retired Bishop Cardinal Emmanuel Wamala, KAS Country Representative Mr. Peter Girke, Uganda’s Principal Judge James Ogola, Kampala City Mayor Nassar Ssebagala and several heads of political parties and members of Parliament. About 200 participants spent the afternoon of Tuesday, October 7th at Imperial Royale Hotel in Kampala discussing the values cherished by Uganda’s First Prime Minister Ben Kiwanuka and how they relate to the Uganda of toady.
The lecture was intended to create a forum to reflect on the virtues that Ben Kiwanuka stood for, so that Ugandans can live up to them and also to learn from his experiences and to draw lessons for deepening multiparty democracy and respect for human rights in Uganda. Similarly, as one of the strategies to achieve its objective of promoting democracy, FAD initiated an annual award to be presented to Ugandans who have been identified to excelled in fighting for and promoting Fundamental Human Rights and Rule of law. Hon. Prof. Dr. Justice George Kanyeihamba of the Supreme Court of Uganda won this year’s award donated by Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung. Justice Kanyeihamba was honoured for his remarkable contributions towards the protection of fundamental human rights and promotion of rule of law in Uganda and Africa. The award was presented by the German Ambassador to Uganda who pointed out Germany’s commitment towards Human Rights protection. He applauded KAS and FAD for organising the memorial lecture and initiating the rule of law award. Former Democratic Party President, Dr. Paul Ssemogerere, chaired the lecture.
Justice Kanyeihamba also presented a paper titled “Democracy, the rule of law, human rights and governance” which was discussed by Gulu District Chairman and Democratic Party Regional Vice President Nobert Mao along with MP John Kawanga. The presenter and each of the discussants spoke with profound nostalgia about the remarkable contributions made by the late Ben Kiwanuka towards Uganda’s independence and the firm establishment of democratic governance, rule of law and respect for human rights and freedoms.
The late Benadicto Kiwanuka was founding president of the Democratic Party, and Uganda’s first Prime Minister at independence. He served as Chief Justice during Idi Amin’s reign before being brutally murdered by the same regime in September 1972. It is 36 years since Kiwanuka passed way, nevertheless, his name remains inscribed on the hearts of many Ugandans as an icon who was committed to promoting democracy, rule of law and human rights. KAS Country Representative Mr. Peter Girke indicted that the Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung was considering supporting the Ben Kiwanuka Memorial Lecture regularly.