Gender Equality in Uganda

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Flag of Uganda
Population (in Mil.) 36.35
Gross Domestic Product (In USD Billions - WB) 23.72
Sex Ratio (m/f) 0.99
Life Expectancy Ratio (f/m) 1.035087719
Fertility Rate 6.69
Estimated Earned Income (f/m) 0.73
Tertiary Enrolment Ratio (f/m) 4.2
Women in Parliament (in %) 35
Human Development Index 161/187
Social Institutions and Gender Index 73/86
Gender Inequality Index 161/186
Gender Equity Index 85/168
Women’s Economic Opportunity Index 102/128
Global Gender Gap Index 46/68
More information on variables

Social Institutions

The Social Institutions and Gender Index (SIGI) measures gender-based discrimination in social norms, practices and laws across 160 countries. The SIGI comprises country profiles, a classification of countries and a database; it serves as a research, policy and advocacy tool for the development community and policy makers.

The SIGI covers five dimensions of discriminatory social institutions, spanning major socio-economic areas that affect women’s lives: discriminatory family code, restricted physical integrity, son bias, restricted resources and assets, and restricted civil liberties. The SIGI’s variables quantify discriminatory social institutions such as unequal inheritance rights, early marriage, violence against women, and unequal land and property rights.

In the 2014 edition of the SIGI, Uganda has medium levels of discrimination against women in social institutions. It has lower discrimination in restricted civil liberties and higher discrimination in restricted access to resources and assets. Read the full country profile and access the data here:

Women Activists

Women Activists in Uganda are expressing their disappointment about the increasing cases of violence against women and children. A campaign code named "Murder of Women campaign" has started with online interactions to brainstorm and exchange ideas on how best to intervene. Recently, Uganda has witnessed increased cases of men murdering their wives and child sacrifice. This campaign is the continuation of the recently concluded campaign of 16 Days of Activism against Gender Based Violence which was from 25th November to 10th December 2008. The campaign is being spearheading by FIDA-Uganda and meetings are underway to come out with the practical solutions.

In all this, what is hurting is that it is no ones business. It like let women be butchered! After all its their mistakes. No one has come out to condemn even the legislators have kept quiet about it and some of the perpetrators walk scot-free. This impunity must stop.

One of the organisers at FIDA-Uganda had this to say , we shall hold a meeting at the end of the month, the situation is getting worse- and this is countrywide. The impunity with which communities are acting is unbelievable- this is because there is no form of accountability whatsoever- the justice system has become compromised and the community members and leaders themselves are responsible for the violence against women.
Several strategies have been proposed and below is a suggestion from one of the contributors
We need to pressure for an Official Statement from Government about the Murder of women. I think this year women's day should be a day of “Mourning"! We need to change and Stop using development/academic terminologies like "Gender Violence" which desensitize people and call it what it is - “Murder of Women in Uganda"! A propaganda war is as important as a practical one!

Reported Cases of Violence Against Women between November and December 2008

  • The New vision of 3rd Dec ‘2008 reported on page 3 that; a 65 year old Yusufu Sokolo of Namutya Busana sub-county, Kayunga district was sentenced to life imprisonment for hacking his wife to death after being denied sex.
  • New Vision of 16th Dec’2008 in the front page, a 37 year old man killed his wife by smashing a bottle on her head because she refused him to read a text message on her mobile phone. He was arrested and charged with murder.
  • Monitor of 13th Dec ‘2008 on page 4 the Member of Parliament of Arua municipality, Akbar Hussien Godi arrested as a suspect in his wife’s brutal murder.
  • Monitor 22nd Nov’2008, on page 8, a 14 year old Ethiopian girl and pupil of Kampala primary school defiled on her way to school. She was arrested, charged with simple defilement and remanded in Naguru remand home while the defiler was set free on bail. Her community wanted to force her into early marriage but she refused leading to the rape.
  • New vision of 15th Dec 2008, a 26 year old Esther Ameso admitted in Soroti hospital after she was battered by her husband Juventine Emaju with a hoe handle and stabbed her several times with a kitchen knife. Ameso who is a mother of five children is unable to dress or feed herself. Her husband is currently on the run.
  • New vision of 14th Dec’2008 on the front page; three women killed in five days. A drunken man called Kasssim Ulekua punched and killed his wife in a domestic quarrel in Lefori sub-county Moyo district. He is currently on the run.
  • In the same paper, a 29 year old Asian man of Indian origin, Patel Alpesh Kumar Mahendrabai charged with the murder of his wife, Krishna Patel in Buwenge Eastern Uganda.
  • Monitor of 13th Dec ‘2008 on page 30 reported that Inzikuru’s husband was arrested and detained at police for assaulting her and threatening violence.
  • The Red Pepper dated Monday 3rd November 2008 at page 4 in Wankulukuku, Rubaga Division, dad remanded over defilement of 10 year old daughter and at page 5 of the same paper 50 year old man arrested for defiling 2 year old child in Mukono District.
  • The Red Pepper dated Friday 7th November 2008 at page 5 in Ntinda, Nakawa Division a man is nabbed for incest and at page 6 of the same paper in Busia headmaster ballons a p.6 pupil aged 15 from his office.
  • The Red Pepper dated Monday 10th November 2008 at page 6 in Mbarara a man is jailed for defiling a 7 year old child.
  • The Red Pepper dated Wednesday 3rd December 2008 at page 5 in Kawempe a top city hajji defiles student aged 14 years and at page 6 in Mityana tycoon sacrifices own child for riches while at page 7 pupil aged 11 years is gang raped, strangled dead in Kinoni village Rakai District.
  • The Red Pepper dated Monday 15th December 2008 at page 7 in Kasese 2 girls are kidnapped while a witch doctor aged 42 defiles a child in Mukono District and at page 8 a man kills a 5 months old baby in Masaka district, Butenga sub county

The Africa for Women's Rights Campaign


Key facts

  • CEDAW: ratified in 1985
  • CEDAW Protocol: not ratified
  • Maputo Protocol: signed in 2003

The Campaign

On 8 March 2009 the "Africa for Women's Rights" Campaign was launched at the initiative of the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH), in collaboration with fove non-governmental regional organisations: the African Center for Democracy and Human Rights Studies(ACDHRS), Femmes Africa Solidarité (FAS), Women’s Aid Collective (WACOL), Women in Law and Development in Africa (WILDAF) and Women and Law in Southern Africa (WLSA). These organisations make up the Steering Committee responsible for the coordination of the Campaign.

The Campaign aims to put an end to discrimination and violence against women in Africa, calling on states to ratify international and regional instruments protecting women's rights, to repeal all discriminatory laws, to adopt laws protecting the rights of women and to take all necessary measures to wensure their effective implementation.

Country Focus: Uganda

Although Uganda ratified the Convention on Elimination of all forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) in 1985, it is yet to ratify its Optional Protocol and has not ratified the Protocol to the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights on the Rights of Women in Africa (Maputo Protocol).

The Coalition of the Campaign is particularly concerned about the following continued violations of women’s human rights in Uganda: persistent discriminatory laws and customs; physical violence; unequal access to property; and limited access to justice.

Read more


The Women, Business and the Law

Where are laws equal for men and women? 

The Women, Business and the Law report presents indicators based on laws and regulations affecting women's prospects as entrepreneurs and employees. Several of these indicators draw on the Gender Law Library, a collection of over 2,000 legal provisions impacting women's economic status. This report does not seek to judge or rank countries, but to provide information to inform discussions about women’s economic rights. Women, Business and the Law provides data covering 6 areas: accessing institutions,using property, getting a job, providing incentives to work, building credit, and going to court. Read more about the methodology.

For detailed information on Uganda, please visit the Women, Business and
the Law Uganda


The FAO Gender and Land Rights Database

FAO logo.jpg

The FAO Gender and Land Rights Database contains country level information on social, economic, political and cultural issues related to the gender inequalities embedded in those rights. Disparity on land access is one of the major causes for social and gender inequalities in rural areas, and it jeopardizes, as a consequence, rural food security as well as the wellbeing of individuals and families.

Six categories

The Database offers information on the 6 following Categories:

  • National legal frame
  • International treaties and conventions
  • Customary law 
  • Land tenure and related Institutions
  • Civil society organizations
  • Selected Land Related Statistics

For detailed information on Uganda, please visit the report on Uganda in the FAO Gender and Land Rights Database.


Case Studies

  • Working at the local level in Uganda (This case study was featured in Issues Brief 5 on Managing for Development Results (MfDR), published by the OECD DAC Network on Gender Equality in 2009).

External Links

Article Information
Wikiprogress Wikichild Wikigender University Wikiprogress.Stat ProgBlog Latin America Network African Network eFrame