The Ugandan human rights lawyer Nicholas Opiyo will be conferred with the 2017 German Africa Prize on Wednesday (25 November) in Berlin. President Frank-Walter Steinmeier will present the prestigious award to Opiyo at a ceremony that will be attended by members of the Berlin diplomatic community as well as high-ranking officials of the German government.
The German Africa Foundation which has awarded the prize since 1993, said Opiyo had been honoured for his role in protecting peace, democracy, and human rights in the east African country.
Opiyo, founder of the human rights organization “Chapter Four Uganda”, has worked tirelessly since 2005 to defend civil liberties in Uganda, often for free and on behalf of society’s most vulnerable and marginalized.
The 37-year-old lawyer is reputed for fearlessly handling the most sensitive cases that many of his colleagues are afraid of.
“I’m very delighted to be the recipient of the award 2017. This award is very prestigious and I follow after extremely eminent Africans including the former South African public protector. It’s really humbling for me that this award was bestowed upon me,” Opiyo said in an interview with DW in May.
The German Africa Prize annually honours “outstanding individuals for their long-standing endeavours to foster democracy, peace, human rights, art, culture, the social market economy and social concerns” in Africa.