This story is from Human Rights Watch (HRW):
Uganda should drop the charges against 19 people arrested while seeking refuge in a shelter for homeless youth, Human Rights Watch said today in a letter to the director of public prosecutions. They were charged with committing “a negligent act likely to spread infection of disease,” as well as “disobedience of lawful orders.”
The 19 young people have been in prison since police arrested them on March 29, 2020, along with four others who were later released. They were arrested on the pretext that they had violated laws used to prevent the spread of Covid-19 by staying in a group home run by the nongovernmental organization Children of the Sun Foundation, in Nsangi in Wakiso district, outside Kampala. The commissioner general of prisons has prevented lawyers from the Human Rights Awareness and Promotion Forum from visiting them or communicating by phone or video link.
“Prosecuting authorities should drop charges and release 19 Ugandan youth who have committed no crime,” said Mausi Segun, Africa director at Human Rights Watch. “It is not a crime to be homeless and live in a shelter, and the ongoing detention of the shelter residents is arbitrary, abusive, and contrary to public health.”
Read the full report here.