Official name : Republic of Uganda
Capital : Kampala
Currency : Uganda shilling (UGS)
Language : English, Swahii and Luganda
Inhabitants : 39.000.000
Visa required : YES (at arrival)
The violent history
After the colony Uganda became independent from England after WW2, the country was plagued for Africa's notions, mini-country by military coups and acquisitions. Idi Amin led Uganda in the seventies to the edge of the abyss. Kony is still doing it with his “Lord's resistance army” from especially the 80s and 90s. Especially in the north of Uganda the rebel group is active. This group wants to establish a state on the basis of the Ten Commandments from the Bible. To supplement his army, Kony kidnaps children who are then used as child soldiers or sex slaves. The rebel group has been active for more than two decades and has estimated an estimated 20,000 children kidnapped. The Ugandan army has apparently chased the so-called resistance army out of the country - mainly Congo - but remains wary of its return.
Since 2005, an international arrest warrant has been issued against Kony by the International Criminal Court. In 2012, the organization "Invisible Children Inc" launched an action to raise awareness of Kony and his actions in the Western world, in an attempt to promote his arrest. Part of the campaign is a short documentary that was posted on YouTube in early March 2012. The documentary was viewed 100 million times within a month. Meanwhile, a part 2 of Kony 2012 has appeared on YouTube that has been viewed more than a million times in four days. It can not only be dangerous in the country itself, it is also often unsettled just outside the national borders. This has everything to do with tribal disputes that have lacquered boundaries. Civil wars in Rwanda and Congo are sometimes cross-border.
Another big problem in Uganda is HIV/AIDS. The estimated number of people living with HIV in Uganda is more than 1.5 million of the 22 million people living in the country. Approximately 64,000 people died as a result of the disease and in 2013 more than 140,000 cases of AIDS occurred. Another important indicator is the percentage of people between 15 and 49 years old with HIV. In 2009 that was 7.4 percent. This means that on average per 15 people a person is infected with HIV in Uganda in the age group between 15 and 49 years old. On 26 January 2011, the activist for gay rights David Kato was murdered in his home in Mukono. Together with the organization Sexual Minorities Uganda (SMUG), he litigated successfully against the tabloid Rolling Stone, which published names and photos of gays and lesbians with the call to kill them. He also battled against the law against homosexuality, which stipulated that the death penalty should apply to certain homosexual acts. President Yoweri Museveni, who stated that homosexuality was a Western evil, eventually gave way to pressure and stopped the law. In Uganda, however, there are still 14 years in prison for homosexual acts. Uganda homicides are also regularly known as iron bar killings, which also took place in the days of dictator Idi Amin.
Uganda has already built up an image throughout the decades that is conservative, aggressive and unreliable. A poor breeding ground for investing for companies and for tourists to visit. So despite the fact that nowadays it is relatively quiet and safe in Uganda, the country and its inhabitants still experience the consequences of its dark past. Despite all the problems and the bad image of the country, it is one of Africa's most beautiful countries. It is not for nothing that Winston Churchill labeled Uganda as the "pearl of the continent". Jungle, waterfalls, animals (i.e. the last wild gorilla’s in the world) and interesting minorities.
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