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Imani Karume

HRD, Leader
Kyaka2 Refugee Camp

Imani Karume, also known as "Rasta", is a human rights defender working on refugee's rights in Uganda, particularly at Kyaka2 Refugee Camp, where he leads the LGBTI group Angels. Imani Karume "Rasta" is from Bukavu South Kivu Province, Democratic Republic of Congo, and holds himself a refugee status in Uganda.

The Ugandan government continues to limit freedom of expression and association with human rights defenders being subjected to threats, intimidation and judicial harassment due to their legitimate human rights work. A number of human rights organisations have reported break-ins at their offices. Particularly at risk are human rights defenders advocating for the rights of LGBTI people. Same-sex conduct remains criminalised under Uganda’s colonial-era law, which prohibits “carnal knowledge” among people of the same sex. In August 2017, the Minister of Ethics and Integrity issued a directive shutting down events associated with Pride celebrations in Kampala and Jinja and deployed police officers to the venues.


The government has clamped down on independent media and enacted legislation restricting civil and political rights and constraining the functioning of NGOs. On 14 March 2016, the 'Non-Governmental Organisations Act' (NGO Act) came into force, which includes some provisions containing vague wording which could be used to target legitimate human rights organisations. The NGO Act establishes a National Bureau of Non-Governmental Organisations which has the power to blacklist NGOs and restricts NGOs from engaging in activities that are "threatening national security" or “prejudicial to the security, interests or dignity of the people of Uganda”, leaving these terms undefined.