By Kampala Post Reporter
Bernard Mujuni, the Commissioner for Equality and Rights, Ministry of Gender Labour and Social Development says, Government intends to promote the cultural values of several indigenous minority groups in order to save from extinction.
"We are developing a National Action Plan on Business and Human Rights that will play a vital role in promoting our cultural values especially for the minority groups," Mujuni said on Wednesday while speaking during a penal discussion organized by the Cross-Cultural Foundation of Uganda (CCFU), at School of Law, Makerere University. Mujuni noted that culture is a fundamental Human Right which Government is now up to guard jealously.
"We need to create spaces that will enable value addition to our cultures especially that of the minority groups in an attempt to promote them," he said adding that in doing so, “Government needs to understand the contribution of our cultures to our county's GDP.”
The discussion highlighted the importance of cultural rights and their link to sustainable development, the synergies and potential conflicts between cultural rights, development as well as the mainstream human rights in the country.
Ms. Emily Kinama, the Litigation and Research Counsel, Katiba Institute of Kenya said that in a bid to promoting the cultural rights, there is a need to eliminate the harmful practices that affect the health of the people.
"Since the culture is a driver and enabler of the realization of the SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals), we have to be innovative and progressive when we are dealing with the rights to culture," she noted during the event.
The discussion that was held under the theme; 'Cultural Rights and Uganda's development challenge - Synergy or Conflict', brought together representatives from Human Rights Organizations, religious, cultural and academic institutions in Uganda.
Over the past five years, CCFU has implemented a program on enhancing cultural rights of Ugandans including several indigenous minority groups through heritage promotions. These groups include; Ik, Benet, Bamba, Batwa, Babwisi, Batuku and Basongora among others.