Uganda appoints GLB advocacy group to public health committee

In a surprising move, the government of Uganda appointed an organization aligned with GLB interests there to an important public health committee.

In a surprising, unprecedented action, the Uganda government has appointed LGBTI lobby group, Uhspa Uganda, to a committee to mainstream homosexual’s rights in Uganda’s Public Health Policies.

The Uganda Health and Science Press Association is a registered LGBTI network of groups.

The Health, Human Rights and Gender Committee is overseen by the Ministry of Health in Kampala. It brings together high profile activists, policy makers and donors to develop a Human Rights-based approach to health programming in Uganda.

A letter signed by Uganda’s Director General for Health Services, Mr Nathan Kenya-Mugisha, on behalf of the Ministry of Health, described Uhspa Uganda as a “key stakeholder” in mainstreaming minorities rights in health programming in Uganda.

All along opponents of the Anti-Homosexuality Bill have contended that the bill would drive gays away from any health or prevention services. This press release quotes Dr. Thomas Muyunga who confirms the effect of the AHB.

There are attempts by the Ministry of Health to support health delivery to LGBTI persons through the Most At Risk Populations network clinic at the national referral Hospital in Kampala. However, the clinic is poorly funded, and since the introduction of the Anti Homosexuality Bill 2009 in Ugandan Parliament, clients visiting the clinic have dropped for fear of being arrested.

According to Dr Thomas Muyunga, an activist and a medical doctor, some of the clinic’s clients, think the clauses of the Bahati Bill have already become law, even though the bill expired with the Eighth Parliament of Uganda earlier this year.

With reports that the bill may soon return, I suspect it will take time for this public health committee to engage frightened people to come in.

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  • Andy

    What? Does this make any sense?

  • Maazi NCO

    What? Does this make any sense?

    Actually it does. It is the interest of Uganda to extend health services to all its citizens including those engaging in deviant behaviour. Prostitutes and drug addicts are also included in these programmes, but that does not mean we are on the verge of legalizing narcotics or prostitution. However, I am not sure why the health ministry needs to hire a gay rights group masquerading as a HIV/AIDS Prevention NGO. Surely, these sex deviants can be incorporated into the programme without the help of those rabble-rousers? There are several genuine HIV/AIDS NGOs to approach, why did the health ministry choose that particular NGO? Anyways, the health ministry will be approached for clarification on some matters. Good reporting Warren ! I wasn’t even aware of this development !!

  • Lynn David

    Maazi… Actually it does. It is the interest of Uganda to extend health services to all its citizens…

    Then why did it shut-down any talk about doing so in the past? And do things like charge a radio station with public indecency (or something along those lines) when gay activists went on a program to discuss the lack of services being extended to gays?

    I am not sure why the health ministry needs to hire a gay rights group masquerading as a HIV/AIDS Prevention NGO. … There are several genuine HIV/AIDS NGOs to approach, why did the health ministry choose that particular NGO? Anyways, the health ministry will be approached for clarification on some matters.

    Likely the government didn’t know about its affiliations and would rather continue not providing the services to gays in Uganda. Your last sentence above is telling in that point, despite your opening bluster.

  • Pingback: Uganda: LHBTI-rettsforkjempere utnevnt til offentlig komite | Homonytt fra hele verden

  • Thomas

    re: ON SEVERAL GENUINE HIV/AIDS NGOs

    What constitutes a genuine HIV/AIDS NGO in Uganda or anywhere? If one of the answers has qualifications, mental attitude, experience and value for money where funds will be spent on specific budget votes, then am with you. But if you have used this perjoratively, it is sad. There are situations where we all know people who have stolen HIV/AIDS money in billions and it is why Uganda is failing to keep the once enviable standard to end HIV! I do not know what to mourn; the theft, selfishness, impunity or the casting aspersions to the gay.


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