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Ugandan elections amid the Covid-19 pandemic: fear and hope in the civic space

March 5, 2021 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm


Uganda’s January 2021 presidential elections pitted the young pop star turned politician Bobi Wine against the 76-year-old military leader Yoweri Museveni who captured power through the barrel of the gun 35 years ago in 1986. Ugandan youth leader and human rights defender Johncation Muhindo discusses in this talk the elections’ implications on civic space and human rights amidst the Covid-19 pandemic and offers a glimpse of pockets of hope for a better future.

Johncation Muhindo is the Director of Creations Forum Afrika, based in Kasese, Uganda. He has been one of the architects of the Youth Debate Movement in Uganda that mobilizes and empowers young people by providing them spaces in which to engage in the local and global issues affecting their lives while at the same time building their leadership and civic competencies to participate in democratic and civic life of their communities. As a civic activist Johncation is also a coach with Rhize working with grassroots movements on tactics and strategic nonviolent resistance and nonviolent discipline. His other interest includes land rights and natural resource justice where he helped to expose land grabbing and the “ethinization” of land conflicts in his home district of Kasese.

In early 2021, Johncation and Creations Forum Afrika were deploying creative activism to prevent election violence ahead of Uganda’s 2021 elections in the volatile and highly violent-prone Rwenzori sub-region. Johncation was a visiting fellow at the Centre for Applied Human Rights, University of York, under the auspices of the Protective Fellowship Scheme for Human Rights Defenders at Risk, in 2018-9. In 2020, Johncation was nominated by the US Embassy in Kampala (Uganda) for the International Visitor Leadership Program of the US Department of State thanks to his work in promoting human rights in Uganda.


Centre for Applied Human Rights, University of York
01904 325885
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