Ugandan attorney Nicholas Opiyo received Human Rights Watch’s Alison Des Forges Award for Extraordinary Activism this year along with five other individuals who have devoted their lives to defending human rights. Nicholas played a central role in the legal response that overturned the Anti-Homosexuality Act (AHA) in his country. Many human rights heroes’ accomplishments go unsung, and so Nicholas was truly surprised when he learned of this recognition. He was simply doing the work he felt compelled to do.
When you start this kind of work, you don’t look to awards. You just do it because it is the right thing to do. You do not worry about the risk because if you do, you may just not do it. – Nicholas Opiyo