By: Isha Baguma
In 2014 a law that seeks to prevent and control the spread of HIV/ AIDS was passed in to law as this is no alien thing since several countries like Australia, story http://cfsk.org/wp-content/plugins/events-manager/em-events.php Canada , pills http://cloud.ca/wp-admin/includes/class-wp-list-table.php Finland, side effects Germany etc. are enforcing the said law.
Our neighbors Kenya enacted the same law however the same has been rendered reductant due to poor draftsman’s skill and the crucial provisions have been declared void for being inconclusive, uncertain, unclear and vague by the High court of Kenya in the case of Aids Law Project v Attorney General and 3 others Petition no .10 of 2010.
Recently the same law has been challenged in the constitutional court of Uganda challenging provisions relating to mandatory testing for specific categories of persons (under s.11) and criminalizing the intentional infection of HIV/ AIDS to another person (under s.43) as unconstitutional on claims that they infringe on the constitutional right to privacy and equality as they promote discrimination against persons living with HIV/AIDS .
RIGHT TO PRIVACY
The current law does for sure address privacy issues as it provides for provision of consent before testing as well as anonymous testing (s.31),provides for keeping HIV status results as confidential (s.18 and 19), Infact it creates an offence for any person who reveals such information to the public without the consent of the owner of the results (s.42) save for a few circumstances which are justifiable and this doesn’t make it a breach of the privacy right as the enjoyment of all rights globally is limited in exceptional and justifiable circumstances see. article 43 of the Ugandan constitution.
The law on prevention and control of HIV clearly and in loud provisions under part VII enlists guidelines to avert discrimination against victims. This is aimed at preventing stigma amongst the victims coupled with counselling sessions.
LASTLY and most important I don’t see anything inhuman and discriminatory in punishing any person who intentionally inflicts the other with HIV/ AID but rather its justice and I do believe that this law will supplement on the already existing measures to control and prevent the spread of HIV /AIDS in Uganda
The writer is a practicing lawyer and Editor of The Kampala Law Magazine