President Museveni preparing to sign anti-LGBT bill
Ugandan leader is reportedly ready to sign homophobic bill into law
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President Museveni said he’s ready to "go to war with the homosexual lobby" after taking advice from Ugandan scientists that homosexuality is not genetic, rather a "social behaviour".
Museveni had previously refused to pass the anti-gay bill until more scientific evidence that gay people are "made and not born" had been presented. A medical report prepared by scientists from Uganda's health ministry claims being gay is "not a disease, but merely an abnormal behaviour which may be learned through experiences in life". The report also warns that being gay "has serious public health consequences and should therefore not be tolerated". This, coupled with political pressure, has lead to Museveni saying he would now approve the controversial bill.
The anti-gay bill, also referred to as the ‘Kill the gays’ bill due to its original death penalty clause, is set to criminalise gay people in Uganda. The bill has been looming since 2009 and those convicted could face up to life imprisonment. If passed, it could mean those just talking about homosexual behaviour, or even heterosexuals who have knowledge of gay people but don't report them, could find themselves in trouble with the law. Many fear violence and forthcoming beatings in the wake of a law change.
President Barack Obama has warned Uganda's President Yoweri Museveni that signing any kind of anti-LGBT legislation could seriously hinder relations with the United States. Meanwhile, activists both at home and abroad continue to place pressure on politicians to not to let the Ugandan LGBT community fight alone.
You can read more on the state of LGBT rights in Uganda, and also the LGBT charities and organisations who are fighting against all odds for equality, in this month's GT. Download it: here
Read the official report from Ugandan scientists on homosexuality here.
See president Museveni discussing the bill here:
Words: Lee Dalloway (@Leeroydalvin)