National Objectives and Directive Principles of State Policy

The Preamble.

WE THE PEOPLE OF UGANDA:
RECALLING our history which has been characterised by political and constitutional instability;
RECOGNISING our struggles against the forces of tyranny, oppression and exploitation;
COMMITTED to building a better future by establishing a socio-economic and political order through a popular and durable national Constitution based on the principles of unity, peace, equality, democracy, freedom, social justice and progress; EXERCISING our sovereign and inalienable right to determine the form of governance for our country, and having fully participated in the Constitution-making process; NOTING that a Constituent Assembly was established to represent us and to debate the Draft Constitution prepared by the Uganda Constitutional Commission and to adopt and enact a Constitution for Uganda: DO HEREBY, in and through this Constituent Assembly solemnly
adopt, enact and give to ourselves and our posterity, this Constitution of the Republic of Uganda, this 22nd day of September, in the year 1995. FOR GOD AND MY COUNTRY.  

General.

Article I. Implementation of objectives.
(i) The following objectives and principles shall guide all organs and agencies of the State, all citizens, organisations and other bodies and persons in applying or interpreting the Constitution or any other law and in taking and implementing any policy decisions for the establishment and promotion of a just, free and democratic society.
(ii) The President shall report to Parliament and the nation at least once a year, all steps taken to ensure the realisation of these policy objectives and principles.

Article II. Democratic principles.
(i) The State shall be based on democratic principles which empower and encourage the active participation of all citizens at all levels in their own governance.
(ii) All the people of Uganda shall have access to leadership positions at all levels, subject to the Constitution.
(iii) The State shall be guided by the principle of decentralisation and devolution of governmental functions and powers to the people at appropriate levels where they can best manage and direct their own affairs.
(iv) The composition of Government shall be broadly representative of the national character and social diversity of the country.
(v) All political and civic associations aspiring to manage and direct public affairs shall conform to democratic principles in their internal organisations and practice.
(vi) Civic organisations shall retain their autonomy in pursuit of their declared objectives.

Article III. National unity and stability.
(i) All organs of State and people of Uganda shall work towards the promotion of national unity, peace and stability.
(ii) Every effort shall be made to integrate all the peoples of Uganda while at the same time recognising the existence of their ethnic, religious, ideological, political and cultural diversity.
(iii) Everything shall be done to promote a culture of cooperation, understanding, appreciation, tolerance and respect for each other's customs, traditions and beliefs.
(iv) There shall be established and nurtured institutions and procedures for the resolution of conflicts fairly and peacefully.
(v) The State shall provide a peaceful, secure and stable political environment which is necessary for economic development.

Article IV. National sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity.
(i) The State and citizens of Uganda shall at all times defend the independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity of Uganda.
(ii) The State and citizens of Uganda shall endeavour to build national strength in political, economic and social spheres to avoid undue dependence on other countries and institutions.
(iii) The State shall endeavour to mobilise, organise and empower the Ugandan people to build independent and sustainable foundations for the development of Uganda.

Article V. Fundamental and other human rights and freedoms.
(i) The State shall guarantee and respect institutions which are charged by the State with responsibility for protecting and promoting human rights by providing them with adequate resources to function effectively.
(ii) The State shall guarantee and respect the independence of nongovernmental organisations which protect and promote human rights.

Article VI. Gender balance and fair representation of marginalised groups.
The State shall ensure gender balance and fair representation of marginalised groups on all constitutional and other bodies.

Article VII. Protection of the aged.
The State shall make reasonable provision for the welfare and maintenance of the aged.

Article VIII. Provision of adequate resources for organs of government.
The distribution of powers and functions as well as checks and balances provided for in the Constitution among various organs and institutions of government shall be supported through the provision of adequate resources for their effective functioning at all levels.

Article IX. The right to development.
In order to facilitate rapid and equitable development, the State shall encourage private initiative and self-reliance.

Article X. Role of the people in development.
The State shall take all necessary steps to involve the people in the formulation and implementation of development plans and programmes which affect them.

Article XI. Role of the State in development.
(i) The State shall give the highest priority to the enactment of legislation establishing measures that protect and enhance the right of the people to equal opportunities in development.
(ii) The State shall stimulate agricultural, industrial, technological and scientific development by adopting appropriate policies and the enactment of enabling legislation.
(iii) In furtherance of social justice, the State may regulate the  acquisition, ownership, use and disposition of land and other property, in accordance with the Constitution.

Article XII. Balanced and equitable development.
(i) The State shall adopt an integrated and coordinated planning approach.
(ii) The State shall take necessary measures to bring about balanced development of the different areas of Uganda and between the rural and urban areas.
(iii) The State shall take special measures in favour of the development of the least developed areas.

Article XIII. Protection of natural resources.
The State shall protect important natural resources, including land, water, wetlands, minerals, oil, fauna and flora on behalf of the people of Uganda.

Article XIV. General social and economic objectives.
The State shall endeavour to fulfill the fundamental rights of all Ugandans to social justice and economic development and shall, in particular, ensure that—
(a) all developmental efforts are directed at ensuring the maximum social and cultural well-being of the people; and
(b) all Ugandans enjoy rights and opportunities and access to education, health services, clean and safe water, work, decent shelter, adequate clothing, food security and pension and retirement benefits.

Article XV. Recognition of the role of women in society.
The State shall recognise the significant role that women play in society.

Article XVI. Recognition of the dignity of persons with disabilities.
Society and the State shall recognise the right of persons with disabilities to respect and human dignity.

Article XVII. Recreation and sports.
The State shall promote recreation and sports for the citizens of Uganda.

Article XVIII. Educational objectives.
(i) The State shall promote free and compulsory basic education.
(ii) The State shall take appropriate measures to afford every citizen equal opportunity to attain the highest educational standard possible.
(iii) Individuals, religious bodies and other nongovernmental organisations shall be free to found and operate educational institutions if they comply with the general educational policy of the country and maintain national standards.

Article XIX. Protection of the family.
The family is the natural and basic unit of society and is entitled to protection by society and the State.

Article XX. Medical services.
The State shall take all practical measures to ensure the provision of basic medical services to the population.

Article XXI. Clean and safe water.
The State shall take all practical measures to promote a good water management system at all levels.

Article XXII. Food security and nutrition.
The State shall—
(a) take appropriate steps to encourage people to grow and store adequate food;
(b) establish national food reserves; and
(c) encourage and promote proper nutrition through mass education and other appropriate means in order to build a healthy State.

Article XXIII. Natural disasters.
The State shall institute an effective machinery for dealing with any hazard or disaster arising out of natural calamities or any situation resulting in general displacement of people or serious disruption of their normal life.

Article XXIV. Cultural objectives.
Cultural and customary values which are consistent with fundamental rights and freedoms, human dignity, democracy and with the Constitution may be developed and incorporated in aspects of Ugandan life. The State shall—
(a) promote and preserve those cultural values and practices which enhance the dignity and well-being of Ugandans;
(b) encourage the development, preservation and enrichment of all Ugandan languages;
(c) promote the development of a sign language for the deaf; and
(d) encourage the development of a national language or languages.

Article XXV. Preservation of public property and heritage.
The State and citizens shall endeavour to preserve and protect and generally promote the culture of preservation of public property and Uganda’s heritage.

Article XXVI. Accountability.
(i) All public offices shall be held in trust for the people.
(ii) All persons placed in positions of leadership and responsibility shall, in their work, be answerable to the people.
(iii) All lawful measures shall be taken to expose, combat and eradicate corruption and abuse or misuse of power by those holding political and other public offices.

Article XXVII. The environment.
(i) The State shall promote sustainable development and public awareness of the need to manage land, air and water resources in a balanced and sustainable manner for the present and future generations.
(ii) The utilisation of the natural resources of Uganda shall be managed in such a way as to meet the development and environmental needs of present and future generations of Ugandans; and, in particular, the State shall take all possible measures to prevent or minimise damage and destruction to land, air and water resources resulting from pollution or other causes.
(iii) The State shall promote and implement energy policies that will ensure that people’s basic needs and those of environmental preservation are met.
(iv) The State, including local governments, shall—
  1. create and develop parks, reserves and recreation areas and ensure the conservation of natural resources;
  2. promote the rational use of natural resources so as to safeguard and protect the biodiversity of Uganda.
Article XXVIII . Foreign policy objectives.
(i) The foreign policy of Uganda shall be based on the principles of—
  1. promotion of the national interest of Uganda;
  2. respect for international law and treaty obligations;
  3. peaceful coexistence and nonalignment;
  4. settlement of international disputes by peaceful means;
  5. opposition to all forms of domination, racism and other forms of oppression and exploitation.
(ii) Uganda shall actively participate in international and regional organisations that stand for peace and for the well-being and progress of humanity.
(iii) The State shall promote regional and pan-African cultural, economic and political cooperation and integration.

Article XXIX. Duties of a citizen.
The exercise and enjoyment of rights and freedoms is inseparable from the performance of duties and obligations; and, accordingly, it shall be the duty of every citizen—
(a) to be patriotic and loyal to Uganda and to promote its well-being;
(b) to engage in gainful work for the good of that citizen, the family and the common good and to contribute to national development;
(c) to contribute to the well-being of the community where that citizen lives;
(d) to promote responsible parenthood;
(e) to foster national unity and live in harmony with others;
(f) to promote democracy and the rule of law; and
(g) to acquaint himself or herself with the provisions of the Constitution and to uphold and defend the Constitution and the
law.