Legal Fellow, Uganda - Equality Now

Legal Fellow, Uganda

The Legal Fellow will conduct specialised legal research and analysis and draft legal memos and opinions on women’s and girls’ rights.

Introduction and Background

Equality Now is an international human rights organization working towards creating a society that is equal and just for women and girls all over the world. Equality Now’s work focuses on addressing systemic, multiple and intersecting forms of discrimination and inequalities that continue to plague women and girls, especially those from vulnerable and marginalized backgrounds. Equality Now strives to hold governments responsible for ending legal inequality, sex trafficking, sexual violence and harmful practices, such as female genital mutilation (FGM) and "child marriage”.  Equality Now works at the international, regional and national levels, with its regional offices situated in New York, London, Beirut, and Nairobi.

In Africa, efforts have and continue to be made towards ensuring that the rights and protections enshrined in regional and international human rights treaties are accessible to all women and girls. Many African countries are states parties to the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW), and the Protocol to the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights on the Rights of Women in Africa (“the Maputo Protocol”), which emphasises the rights of women and girls that are more generally provided for under other international treaties. In this regard, Equality Now, in partnership with the Judiciary of the Republic of Uganda, is seeking to pilot an Externship Programme aimed at amplifying capacity building efforts targeted at young legal practitioners committed to women’s and girl’s rights as well as providing crucial technical assistance to judicial actors responsible for contributing to the development of jurisprudence of the Maputo Protocol. The Externship Programme will place a young and talented Legal Fellow with a Judge of the Court of Appeal of Uganda for a period of one year beginnin gin September 2019.


Roles and Responsibilities

The primary role of the Legal Fellow shall be to conduct specialised legal research and analysis and draft legal memos and opinions on women’s and girls’ rights, as assigned by the Judge to whom they are attached. This research and analysis will assist the Judge in utilising the Maputo Protocol and other international human rights law instruments in their rulings and judgements.

Specifically, the Legal Fellow will:

  • Assist the Judge in identifying new areas of research and intervention on legal issues affecting women and girls in Uganda.
  • Assist the Judge in drafting of judgments and rulings as directed.
  • Work closely with the Judge to identify other opportunities for Equality Now to provide technical support to and engage with the Judiciary to create awareness on and enhance implementation of the Maputo Protocol in domestic courts.
  • Perform any other related duties as assigned by the judges and/or Equality Now


Key Competencies

Professionalism: Ability to prioritise work and be well organized in execution and presentation of tasks; maintain good quality of work and consistency in this regard; exemplify a high degree of accountability for actions taken and not taken; work with minimum supervision; show commitment to the role of Legal Fellow and willingness to do more than what is expected; be courteous and willing to learn at every opportunity presented; seek clarity when unsure about instructions given; ability to remain motivated.

Research, Analysis and Writing: Knowledge and understanding of international human rights law, especially as it relates to women and girls; a firm knowledge of the content and application of the Maputo Protocol is highly desirable; ability to conduct high-quality legal research and apply efficient research strategies; ability to analyse and evaluate large amounts of information and draw justified legal conclusions necessary to resolve the legal problems at hand; excellent writing and referencing skills.

Communication: Fluency in spoken and written English (the official language of court proceedings in Uganda); clarity in written and oral presentations; exercise of active listening; demonstration of openness in sharing information; communicating when necessary, for example when experiencing challenges in meeting deadlines.

Interpersonal skills: Ability to resolve conflict; ability to take up leadership roles when required to do so; ability to work in a team and collaborate with other colleagues for execution of specific tasks.

Commitment: Availability to commit to the role for a period of one year starting from last week of August 2019.


Academic and Professional Qualifications

  • Minimum Bachelor of Law degree (LLB.) and a Post-Graduate Diploma in Law from recognised institutions.
  • Minimum of two (2) years’ post-admission practicing experience in an eligible law firm or organisation working on human rights.
  • A strong grasp of the Ugandan legal system.
  • Proven track record of knowledge and commitment – exhibited by coursework, writing, or work experience – to the rights of women and girls in Africa, constitutional law and human rights protections.
  • Excellent organisational skills and ability to manage concurrent deadlines.
  • Excellent writing, research, and analytical skills.
  • Strong communications and interpersonal skills.
  • Proficiency in Microsoft Office Suite and strong technical literacy.
  • Ability to work independently and take initiative.
  • Previous interaction with Equality Now’s internship programme or participation in past capacity building trainings or moot courts is desirable, but not a requirement.


The successful Legal Fellow will receive a modest monthly stipend to cover transport, meals and other related professional expenses.


Application process

Interested and qualified candidates should email their applications to [email protected] by 9 August 2019 at 5:00 PM.

All applicants should send the following documents as part of their application:

  1. Application letter (one page), stating your motivation and suitability for the position;
  2. CV (two pages), including the names and contact information for three referees; and,
  3. Sample (maximum of three pages) of original writing on a topic related to international and regional human rights standards on the rights of women and girls in Africa.

Incomplete applications will not be considered. Please note that all applicants must possess an existing right to live and work in the Republic of Uganda for the full duration of the Externship Programme. Shortlisted candidates will be required to be available for interviews on the week of 12th August 2019. Successful candidates will be required to attend an induction training in Nairobi from 26th to 29th August 2019. The Externship Programme will commence on 2nd September 2019.

Please note that only shortlisted applicants will be contacted.