Uganda’s parliament to reintroduce Anti-Homosexuality Bill

Speaker of Parliament Anita Among cite assassination threats
The Speaker of Parliament of Uganda, Anita Among

Kampala, Uganda | URN | A new bill seeking to control acts of homosexuality in Uganda is due to be presented in Parliament.

The Speaker of Parliament Anita Among told a gathering of legislators and religious leaders during the Ecumenical Thanksgiving Service held at Parliament on Tuesday 28, February 2023 morning that the legislature is determined to lead the country in the fight against homosexuality that has ravaged education institutions.

Parliament first passed the Anti-Homosexuality Act on 20 December 2013, prescribing life sentences and the death penalty for those convicted of participating in the acts. President Yoweri Museveni signed the Act into law on 24 February 2014, before it was annulled by the Constitutional Court on grounds that it was passed without the requisite quorum in the House.

The Act was a Private Member’s Bill introduced as the Anti Homosexuality Bill, 2009 by Ndorwa East Member of Parliament David Bahati. But Among says that despite the setback in the Bahati Bill, Parliament will exercise its mandate and table the Anti-Homosexuality Bill again

The Speaker also observed that while the promoters of homosexuality are on a rampage, and hiding behind human rights to push for their cause, Parliament will detest the vice that is corrupting the morals and values of Ugandans.

The Leader of Opposition in Parliament, Mathias Mpuuga who attended the Ecumenical Service stayed away from the subject and instead in his remarks asked God to help leaders in Uganda to desist from being self-seeking, self-serving and domineering over the weak.

The rejected Anti-Homosexuality Bill had proposed life imprisonment for gay sex, including oral sex, and life imprisonment for “aggravated homosexuality”, including sex with a minor or while HIV-positive.

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Other punitive measures included; life imprisonment for living in a same-sex marriage, seven years for “attempting to commit homosexuality” between five and seven years in jail or a 150 million Shillings fine or both for the promotion of homosexuality.

Equally, businesses or non-governmental organisations found guilty of the promotion of homosexuality would have their certificates of registration cancelled and directors could face seven years in jail.

When the Bill which was backed by 10 petitioners, including academics, journalists, both ruling and opposition MPs, and human rights activists was passed into law, several donors in European nations including Denmark, Norway, the Netherlands, Sweden and the USA were prompted to suspend aid to Uganda.