Uganda’s elections occurred in February, but some people who fled Kampala, the capital city, are just now returning to their regular lives. They told GPJ why they left, and people who stayed explain why they didn’t.
Women who were born with HIV are now having their own children, and increasingly, those children aren’t infected with the virus. Health officials credit Uganda’s focus on providing anti-retroviral treatment to pregnant women and mothers.
Some Ugandan women living with HIV say they were forced or coerced into getting sterilized, sometimes without their knowledge. Women and rights groups in East Africa are watching a legal battle in Kenya, where five women with HIV who were forced into sterilization are suing the government and healthcare providers for violating their rights.
An instructor’s own tough experience inspires him to offer informal classes to a few among thousands of kids who live on the street. Improved literacy is hoped to ease the way, at least for some, to formal education.
A newly-enforced ban on thin plastic bags in Uganda is creating opportunity for entrepreneurs who are creating a new market for reusable bags. From large factory operations to small-scale efforts by groups of friends, bag makers say the ban has provided them with a livelihood.
The MakaPads brand of sanitary pads, which are 95 percent biodegradable, were previously offered free to Uganda refugees. But the brand has come under fire after a failed government inspection and lack of certification. While the Ugandan manufacturer was praised for its efforts to help poor schoolgirls who missed school during menstruation, some women and girls complained about the quality of the brand.
A bar of soap or a bag of salt is sometimes what decides how a person votes in Uganda. In primaries preceding the Feb. 18 general elections, candidates who gave the most money to voters won the elections, according to a report.
Many Ugandans say they want presidential term limits restored, but few expect that change. Amid allegations of bribery of parliamentarians, people argue whether President Yoweri Museveni's 30 years of power have weakened government institutions or brought stability to the nation.
An amendment to a bill intended to protect public funds enables Uganda’s government to get loans from the Bank of Uganda without parliamentary approval. Opponents of President Yoweri Museveni’s National Resistance Movement party say the change could result in theft of public funds, but advocates of the change say it’s necessary for the government to have access to money for emergencies.