Last Topic: 3:30:24pm, 05/30/2023
Last Post: 6:06:54pm, 05/29/2023
Ugandas president, Yoweri Museveni, has signed into law the worlds harshest anti-LGBTQ+ bill, which allows the death penalty for homosexual acts. The move immediately drew condemnation from many Ugandans as well as widespread international outrage. The UK government said it was appalled by the deeply discriminatory bill, which it said will damage Ugandas international reputation. US President Joe Biden decried the act as shameful and tragic violation of universal human rights. He said Washington was considering sanctions and restriction of entry into the United States against anyone involved in serious human rights abuses a suggestion that Ugandan officials may face repercussions. Early on Monday, the speaker of the Ugandan parliament, Anita Annet Among, released a statement on social media confirming Museveni had assented to the law first passed by MPs in March. It imposes the death penalty or life imprisonment for certain same-sex acts, up to 20 years in prison for recruitment, promotion and funding of same-sex activities, and anyone convicted of attempted aggravated homosexuality faces a 14-year sentence. Described by the UN high commissioner for human rights, Volker Trk, as shocking and discriminatory, the bill was passed by all but two of 389 MPs on 21 March. Museveni had 30 days to either sign the legislation into law, return it to parliament for revisions or veto it. He sent it back to MPs in April, with a request for reconsideration. The bill would have still become law without the presidents assent if he returned it a second time.
Among tweeted on Monday morning: The president has assented to the Anti-Homosexuality Act. As the parliament of Uganda, we have answered the cries of our people. We have legislated to protect the sanctity of [the] family.
The speaker said MPs had withstood pressure from bullies and doomsday conspiracy theorists and called for courts to begin enforcing the new laws. Martin Ssempa, one of the main backers of the bill, presented it as a victory against the US and Europe and suggested Uganda needed to push back against groups working to tackle HIV. He said: The president has shown great courage to defy bullying of the Americans and Europeans. That bullying we shall not give you money. They intimidate and threaten you. In a joint statement, the heads of the Global Fund to Fight Aids, Tuberculosis and Malaria, UNAids and the US Presidents Emergency Plan for Aids Relief (Pepfar) reacted with deep concern and said progress on tackling Aids and HIV was now in grave jeopardy.