Uganda government considers death penalty legislation against LGBT people

Gays and lesbians in Uganda may be at risk of receiving the death penalty if caught and charged of "aggravated homosexuality."
Gays, lesbians, allies and internation human right activists are outraged by the Uganda's government move to strengthen their laws against homosexuality.
Gays, lesbians, allies and international human right activists are outraged by the Ugandan government's move to strengthen their laws against homosexuality.

KAMPALI — Gays and lesbians in Uganda may be at risk of receiving the death penalty if caught and charged for “aggravated homosexuality.”

An act of aggravated homosexuality, according to the bill which has yet to be voted, is when a person is accused of having sex with someone of the same-sex and meets one of the following criteria:

  • same-sex partner is below the age of 18
  • offender is HIV positive
  • offender is parent or guardian of partner
  • offender has authority over partner
  • partner has a disability
  • offender is a serial offender
  • offender drugged partner in anyway

The bill says also if anyone is found guilty of committing homosexuality or advocating it to a group he or she will face a possible 10-year prison sentence.

Uganda’s minister of ethics and integrity, James Nsaba Buturo, told Inter Press Service that the bill is a positive sign and Uganda is providing a “leadership role” for correct morals.

“It is with joy we see that everyone is interested in what Uganda is doing, and it is an opportunity for Uganda to provide leadership where it matters most. So we are here to see a piece of legislation that will not only define what the country stands for, but actually provide leadership around the world,” Buturo said.

Human Rights activists like Gerald Sentogo from the Sexual Minorities of Uganda, are outraged at the bill’s language and said it not only breaks international treaties, but the Ugandan constitution as well.

“The Bill is so inhumane … It violates every aspect of a human being. I mean you cannot tell me you will kill me because I’m gay,” said Sentogo. 

To read more about this story, visit New Jersey Newsroom.

– Simon Husted

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