Musevini to Sign Ugandan Anti-Gay Bill

After initially refusing to sign an infamous bill that prescribes life in prison (but no longer the death penalty) for homosexuality because the legislature lacked a quorum to pass it, Ugandan President Museveni has changed his mind and decided to sign the bill and make it law.

Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni has decided to sign a law imposing up to a lifetime jail sentence for homosexuality, announced government spokesman Ofwono Opondo via Twitter on Friday. NRM caucus spokeswoman Evelyn Anite confirmed Opondo’s announcement to BuzzFeed.

This is a reversal for Museveni, who had written to members of parliament after the legislation passed in December that he had come to believe that homosexuality was a biological “abnormality” and not something that should be criminalized. He had also told Western human rights activists that he would reject the bill during a meeting last month.

Museveni made his announcement during a retreat with members of his party, the National Resistance Movement, which has primarily focused on the party’s leadership as it prepares for elections in 2016. Museveni had been facing stiff pressure from his colleagues to accept the bill.

It’s not really a surprise, though. Museveni and his wife have long been virulently and publicly anti-gay. This bill isn’t as bad as the original bill, which included the death penalty, or as bad as the new Nigerian legislation. But it’s still barbaric and unjust.

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  • Matt G

    The support of this from American Christians tells us what they would really like for America if they could get away with it.

  • StevoR : Free West Papua, free Tibet, let the Chagossians return!

    Shit. :-(

  • StevoR : Free West Papua, free Tibet, let the Chagossians return!

    @1. Matt G. – Yes. I think you’re right. Sad news.

  • marcus

    And this came right after Obama appealed to his sense of fairness and justice. Guess he just doesn’t have one.

  • vmanis1

    What’s more, he got a whole bunch of scientists (by which I mean people with real degrees and real teaching/research appointments at real institutions in Uganda) to say that according to their studies of the matter, homosexuality is not a genetic or inherent personality characteristic, but an acquired one.

    `Trofim D Lysenko to the white courtesy phone, you have a call from Comrade Stalin.’

  • Sastra

    And over in Nigeria:

    A mob attacked gay people in a neighborhood in Abuja, the capital of Nigeria, dragging young men from their homes, beating them with nail-studded clubs and whips, and shouting that they were “cleansing the community” of gays, several Nigerian activists and a witness said Saturday… The attack came in the wake of a new law signed by President Goodluck Jonathan prescribing prison sentences of up to 14 years for gay people. There have been recent episodes of similar mob violence in the Muslim-dominated north of Nigeria.

    Gee, if the law puts gay people in prison then the mobs won’t have any reason to attack them, will they?

  • Phillip IV

    Museveni is also supporting a proposed amendment to the constitution that would preclude people accused or rape or homosexuality from being released on bail. And they’ve outlawed all forms of pornography and immodest clothing.

    I’d say we’re already about halfway to the point where you’d start wishing for Idi Amin back, so he could restore some sanity to the country.