Human rights violations against the Batwa in Uganda
Question for written answer E-005028-14
to the Commission
Barbara Lochbihler (Verts/ALE)
The Batwa people in Uganda have been evicted from their original home owing to the creation of various national parks which have received funding from the European Union, among others. The Batwa are traditional hunters and gatherers but are now forced to earn their living by providing displays of dancing and tours for tourists and by selling crafts. They have received training for this purpose.
This new way of life has had some devastating consequences. Reports indicate that life expectancy has fallen sharply among the Batwa people. Experts also point to a fundamental change in the social structure, as a result of which sexual violence has increased. There have even been recent reports of food shortages and famine.
Under the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, which has been signed by all the EU countries, the rights of the Batwa must be protected and they must again be given land that will enable them to continue their traditional way of life. If it is not possible for them to return to their original land, a suitable replacement must be found.
What steps has the EU already taken to ensure that the rights of the Batwa in Uganda are respected? Is further action planned?
In view of repeated allegations of corruption in the past, how does the Commission verify that EU funding is in fact used for the intended purpose? What results have checks already carried out brought to light?
Are any follow-up assessments planned to investigate the actual impact of measures that have been supported with EU funding?
OJ C 405, 14/11/2014