Delayed Access to Justice for Sexual Gender Based Violence in Uganda and Implications for Gender SDG Targets

Although the number of sexual gender based violence cases has declined during the past five years, prosecution and sanctioning of these cases remain very low. Worse still, cases that make it to the courts of law are characterised by high rates of dismissal and low conviction rates. This brief examines the reasons for this worrying trend and what it implies for attaining gender SDG targets. We recommend measures such as sensitisation, increased financing and staffing of the judicial system, and building infrastructure for testing evidence samples which would help in expediting justice for the victims. In addition, publicising rape and defilement prosecutions cases and handing down tougher sentences would go some way in reversing the impunity by perpetrators to continue such very harmful practices. In addition, we call for investing in investigative infrastructure to facilitate timely prosecution and strengthening of victim and witness support systems to protect victims and eye witnesses.