Uganda’s Human Rights defender, William Amanzuru, wins EU HRDs award 2019

William Amanzuru an environmental rights defender from Adjumani has been named as the winner of the EU Human Rights Defenders’ Award 2019 on the 6th May 2019 at the residence of the Norwegian Ambassador in Kampala, is given annually by the European Union and Norway to recognise an outstanding contribution by a human rights defender in Uganda.

William Amanzuru was chosen as the winner because of his courageous defence of environmental rights in his local area, including speaking out against destruction of the Zoka Forest, the only natural rainforest in Adjumani District in North West Uganda.

Zoka Forest has been targeted by illegal logging, which reduces biodiversity and increases the chances of landslides, making it harder for local communities to farm and sustain their livelihoods.

Because of his work to expose the powerful individuals behind the illicit activities, Amanzuru has faced threats, surveillance and intimidation. His family have also been targeted as a consequence of his activism.

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