Uganda Passes Anti Homosexuality Bill Into Law, Activists Vow To Seek Legal Redress.
By Culton Scovia Nakamya
Activists and human rights defenders have vowed to challenge the Anti-homosexuality law, should the president give it a final approval.
In a statement released by Kuchu Times, Kasha Jacqueline Nabagesera, LGBT+ Rights Activist said Ugandan authorities should not think this is the end.
The human rights activists have vowed to challenge the law because it infringes on the privacy of a section of people and undermines their sexual rights.
“Since the legislative has refused to reform the already existing sexual offense laws lets help them and reform the freedoms of liberty, association and right to live free from fear”.
A total of 389 out of 529 Members of parliament on Tuesday March 21st voted in favor, passing the Anti-Homosexuality Bill 2023 into law.
The private members bill moved by Bugiri municipality MP Asuman Basalirwa, criminalizes same sex relationships, marriages, funding among other activities presumed to be promoting the vice.
“we hear and recognize the voices of the human rights experts however, we are alive to the mind and spirit of the framers of our constitution. ” Speaker of parliament Anita Annet Among said.
In his recent address to parliament, President Museveni wondered if it is by nature or nurture that one becomes a homosexual. He asked for time to seek scientific findings before final conclusions. “The homosexuals are deviations from normal. The western countries should stop wasting the time of humanity by trying to impose their practices on other people”. Said Museveni.
If assented to by the president, the Anti Homosexuality Act provides a 10-year sentence for anyone in same sex relationship or identifies as gay and maximum death sentence for aggravated homosexuality with minors.
“Where somebody has got your child into homosexuality, life imprisonment is not adequate. The amendment iam proposing is that these people should be castrated”. Said Sarah Opendi.
In her submissions to the parliamentary Human rights Committee Before passing the bill, Prof. Sylvia Tamale an academician said homosexuals have a right to life like any other person.
“I don’t care whether it is one person who is a homosexual, that person has a right to be on this earth like you and me and I think it is an abuse of power to say that they don’t have a right to exist like this law is saying. It is against our African ethos of ubuntu when we legislate basically to disappear the identity of a section of our population”. Prof. Sylvia Tamale said
She further warned that the same law could be used to haunt political leaders because their rivals will brand them gay before the electorates.
West Budama County MP Fox Odoi presented a minority report opposing the bill arguing that the bill seeks to criminalize people based on appearance.
“Every 42 seconds, there is a female child being defiled in Uganda and that is the problem. The problem is not homosexuality infact I dare say this is a diversion. The people you should be running after is you and me the heterosexuals not homosexuals”. Said Odoi.