Uganda: death penalty for homosexuals possible
The new law not only takes action against homosexual people themselves – people or groups who work for the community can also be punished.
Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni has signed into law a law against homosexual acts, according to Parliament Speaker Anita Annet Among. According to consistent media reports, the Office of the President has also confirmed the signing.
Among other things, the law provides for the death penalty for homosexuals who are convicted of rape or of having sex with minors or the disabled. People or groups who advocate for homosexual people, such as LGBT activist groups, can be sentenced to up to 20 years in prison.
LGBT is the English abbreviation for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender. The variant LGBTQ is also often used. Other variants are LGBTQI or LGBTQIA+. Each letter represents one’s gender identity or sexual orientation.
The effects of discrimination are already being felt
Just over a month ago, Museveni returned a first version of the law to parliament. The President had expressed concerns that the law could be legally vulnerable. In its original version, the law would also have criminalized homosexuals who voluntarily seek medical treatment. Parliament has now changed this aspect in a second variant of the law.
The effects were felt even before the law was signed, says Ugandan LGBT activist Sam Ganafa. Hospitals would turn away homosexuals, fearing government harassment. “It’s sad news. Our people have to hide again,” Ganafa told the German Press Agency.