Operations at Chapter Four Uganda have resumed nine months after being suspended by the National Bureau for NGOs.
In a Thursday press release, the NGO said; “We are delighted to officially announce to our clients, partners and the people of Uganda that the office is now open, we have resumed operations and all staff have returned to work.” the statement reads.
Dr. Zahara Nampewo, the Chapter Four’s board chair noted that NGO returns to work still committedto defend legal rights and reclaim respect for civic spaces and freedoms in Uganda.
“All services are fully operational, including emails and social media accounts. We thank all partners and stakeholders for their kind support and solidarity during the suspension period and throughout the five- month court process.” Nampewo said.
The NGO however remains concerned about what it described as hostile and unsafe environment for civil society organisations, non-governmental organisations and human rights defenders in the country.
“As a principled defender of rights, we will continue our work to pursue compliance with human rights law as guaranteed under the Constitution of Uganda and the applicable international and regional human rights instruments.” reads in part the statement.
In August last year, Chapter Four and 53 other Non-Governmental Organizations were under unclear circumstances suspended by Ugandan authorities.
Following its closure, Chapter Four challenged in court the decision which it said was unlawful and violated the Non-Governmental Organisations Act.
Consequently, in early May, the High Court in Kampala led by Justice Musa Ssekaana ruled that the NGO Bureau must hear Chapter Four Uganda within one month and this led the way for the new permit and the reopening.