Uganda’s Anti-Homosexuality Bill to be Tabled in Parliament Today – UPDATED

See Updates below:

According to Parliament spokeswoman, Helen Kawesa, David Bahati’s Anti-Homosexuality Bill is on the agenda to be tabled for a first reading in today’s session of Parliament.

Kawesa said, “The bill will go through a new process again. It is a new Parliament.” This means that the bill will be referred today to a committee for study and recommendations. According to the Kawesa, the entire process of a first reading, referral to committee, public hearings and then a committee report to Parliament will be followed. She said, according to the rules of Parliament, the bill cannot be passed today.

She said the bill was basically the same bill as was almost considered in the 8th Parliament. She had no explanation for why the bill was not being considered where it was stalled back in May, 2011.

UPDATE: 8:15am – According to a person in the plenary session of Parliament, Speaker Kadaga said the bills renewed from the 8th Parliament will be read for the first time today but reports on the bills from the 8th Parliament will be used as a basis for moving toward a 2nd reading and debate. If true, this means that the time from first reading to second reading, debate and possible passage will be much shorter than would be true if a new bill was introduced.

UPDATE: 11:05am – There was a rumor that David Bahati would ask for a special action of Parliament to make today’s introduction count as a 2nd reading of the bill, thus allowing discussion and a possible vote. However, according to Ms. Kawesa, Parliament has concluded for the day with no further action on the AHB. In addition, it appears that similar Parliamentary rules will apply to the timing of a second reading as was applied to the first reading in 2009. This means that a minimum of two weeks must pass before the second reading can be accomplished.

Based on reports from Parliament in October, 2011, it was anticipated that the anti-gay measure would be considered by the new Parliament without repeating the first reading. During the October 2011 session, the Parliament voted to return unfinished business from the 8th Parliament to the current session. At that time, Kawesa said that Speaker of the House Rebecca Kadaga’s Business committee could recommend that the anti-gay bill go back to committee or it could recommend that the former committee report become the basis for debate in the Parliament. Based on the Kawesa’s statement today, the bill is starting over in committee.

The original committee report from Stephen Tashobya’s Legal and Parliamentary Affairs committee left the severe aspects of the bill intact, including the death penalty and life in prison (see an analysis here; here is what the bill would look like if all of the committee’s changes were made).

Today’s order paper is below. Note that the bill is slated for a first reading (click to enlarge).

The AP just dropped this report (9:35am):

Uganda’s anti-gay bill reintroduced in parliament

KAMPALA, Uganda (AP) — A lawmaker in Uganda is reintroducing an anti-gay bill that received wide condemnation, including from President Barack Obama.

The bill was reintroduced Tuesday by David Bahati, the bill’s primary backer. It was originally introduced in 2009 but has never come before the full parliament for a vote. The original draft legislation languished in a committee of parliament as the Ugandan government grappled with the international opposition it generated.

The original draft called for the death penalty for some homosexual acts, one of the reasons the bill received so much attention. Bahati told The Associated Press last year that he is willing to drop that provision if that is the recommendation of a parliament committee.

UPDATE: 11:30am – According Melanie Nathan’s interview with David Bahati this morning, the original AHB was re-introduced this morning without changes. Bahati told her that the committee would be recommending changes in the course of their work.

Full text of the Anti-Homosexuality Bill 2009 as introduced on October 14, 2009 and today.

If the initial committee report were implemented in the coming days, the AHB would look like this.

UPDATE: NTV report 2/7/12

UPDATE: 2/8/12 – Parliamentary research service staffer Charles Tuhaise told me this morning that the bill introduced in Parliament yesterday was the original bill first introduced in October, 2009.  Any amendments will come via affirmative vote on the floor of Parliament after the 2nd reading.

Related:

Ugandan MPs Cheer Introduction of Original Anti-gay Bill

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  • Richard Willmer

    Back to ‘square one’. Bahitler* Follies take two!

    ( * Miportant Disclaimer: the name ‘Bahitler’ was randomnly chosen and bears no relation whatsoever to a Ugandan MP whose name begins with ‘B’ and who is cited on the Disorder Paper! :-) )

  • Richard Willmer

    Or even ‘Important Disclaimer’ …

  • Lynn David

    By all means consider it right before the AIDS Prevention and Control Bill – 2010. I wonder if that has any provisions for gay peoples other than TS.

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  • Maazi NCO

    .Back to ‘square one’. Bahitler* Follies take two!

    .

    Ha, ha, ha, ha. Get your bag of popcorns out, but don’t choke on them when the cinematic rendition of “Take Two” fails to reach the anticipated conclusion. It aint Hollywood down here.

    By all means consider it right before the AIDS Prevention and Control Bill – 2010

    The parliament will consider bills in any order or sequence that it deems fit. Thanks very much !!

    If the initial committee report were implemented in the coming days, the AHB would look like this.

    Somebody here is being presumptuous. I am sure I wrote here on this blog a couple of weeks ago that the Bahati Bill will be reviewed and it will be an opportunity for those of us that had some “issues” with the bill to push for certain amendments.

    At that time, Kawesa said that Speaker of the House Rebecca Kadaga’s Business committee could recommend that the anti-gay bill go back to committee or it could recommend that the former committee report become the basis for debate in the Parliament. Based on the Kawesa’s statement today, the bill is starting over in committee

    .

    Wow, ever the expert !! Who would have known all these “facts”. Strikes me like you know more about how parliament works here in Uganda than yours truly. I think we should hire you as a consultant so that you can conduct the freshers orientation for newly elected parliamentarians.

  • Richard Willmer

    And what exactly do you mean by the ‘anticipated conclusion’, ‘Maazi’?

    I’m not too sure what’s going to happen. All I can say is that any negative consequences of whatever transpires would affect you rather more than it would affect me.

  • Richard Willmer

    BTW, Hollywood is rather more entertaining that the soap opera ‘Killers in Kampala’.

  • Richard Willmer

    Interesting that the UG press is keeping pretty quiet, especially given the claims by the likes of ‘Maazi NCO’ that the ‘Killers in Kampala’ is such a popular show!

    Of course, the (free) world is being fully informed, although some of the information is a bit dodgy (e.g. on the BBC).

  • Maazi NCO

    Interesting that the UG press is keeping pretty quiet, especially given the claims by the likes of ‘Maazi NCO’ that the ‘Killers in Kampala’ is such a popular show!

    Why should the Ugandan press comment substantively on what is already well known throughout our nation?? Everybody down here in Uganda knows about the bill. Even kids know about it and can do a better punditry than what Doc Warren Throckmorton is offering over here (No disrespect to the great Doc !! :D).

    Ugandan papers prefer something more sensational than “mundane news” on a parliamentary bill that shall eventually become law regardless of the sabre-rattling from Baby–Faced Cameron and sweet-talking Barry–Barry Obama and the hangers-on/lickspittle countries of the European Union.

    Of course, the (free) world is being fully informed, although some of the information is a bit dodgy (e.g. on the BBC).

    BBC styles itself as an independent news organization that happens to be owned by the UK government. But in actuality it is government agency that aligns itself strictly with official UK foreign policy. BBC may do a bit of criticism of the UK government on domestic issues. But on foreign policy issues, the BBC is a hawk and a slight improvement on Xinhua News Agency operated by the propaganda department of the People’s Republic of China.

  • Richard Willmer

    Actually, the BBC coverage UNDERSTATES the wanton savagery of the Bill. That’s my ‘issue’ with it.

  • Maazi NCO

    One last thing….Uganda is not Kenya. We wont play docile to foreign interests especially on a social matter that touches on the very essence of who we are .

  • Maazi NCO

    Actually, the BBC coverage UNDERSTATES the wanton savagery of the Bill. That’s my ‘issue’ with it.

    Oh, you are sad because BBC propaganda failed to match the gay propaganda spewed by Euro-American Gay Lobby.There is no savagery in the Bahati Bill and there will be more amendments as I have said before.

    As you report your latest findings to Her Majesty’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office, please remember to pass them the following message I wrote earlier. Let me re-paste it below:

    One last thing….Uganda is not Kenya. We wont play docile to foreign interests especially on a social matter that touches on the very essence of who we are .

    Good Morning (or Is it Good night where you are ?)

  • Richard Willmer

    You obviously haven’t properly read the Bill, ‘Maazi’. Neither it seems have the BBC.

    A won’t bother wishing you ‘good night’; I don’t believe in being insincere.

  • Richard Willmer

    I simply can’t stand all this ‘vicious politeness’ and the hypocrisy that drives it. I have nothing but utter contempt for the behaviour of people like ‘Maazi NCO MP’.

    Fortunately, I know many decent Ugandans, and, in any case, am totally opposed to making generalizations about countries and/or groups of persons on account of insincere, supercilious, arrogant, mean and violence-loving individuals.

  • http://wakingupnow.com Rob Tisinai

    So it looks like the death penalty isn’t out of the bill at all. It’s just hidden under a reference to the penalty for “aggravated defilement” which carries, you guessed it, the death penalty.

    So let’s work this out.

    If you are convicted twice of throwing a party for gays to meet gays, then you are a “serial offender” because you’ve been convicted twice of a listed “related offence” (i.e., “promotion of homosexuality).

    Serial offenders are subject to the penalty for “aggravated defilement,” and that penalty is death, according to Section 129.

    There you go: they don’t even have to prove you’ve had gay sex, and they can still sentence you to death!

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  • Richard Willmer

    Correct – it’s still there. The ‘Tashobya trick’ was just to change the wording.

    And – as you and I are both well aware, Rob – even if it weren’t, the ‘informal death penalty’ of being labelled a ‘homo’ or a sympathizer, and thrown into a Ugandan prison with a bunch of common criminals, would remain.

    If the death penalty provision were removed, Bahati would probably smile sanctimoniously and claim how reasonable and loving he had been, knowing that it would be others who would do his dirty work.

  • Richard Willmer

    This New Vision suggests that the Government is ‘caving in’ to the bahatistas: http://www.newvision.co.ug/news/628876-bill-to-outlaw-homosexuality-in-uganda-re-tabled.html

    I think it’s now up to international community to act decisively to deal with this problem. It’s really sad … including for me personally, as I have many Ugandan friends and really hate the idea of Uganda ‘taking a hit’. But appeasement only makes a problem worse …

  • Richard Willmer

    And here’s the Monitor report: http://www.monitor.co.ug/News/National/-/688334/1322392/-/b0u6uhz/-/index.html

    At least ‘we know where we are now’ (maybe!). There was quite a bit of dissembling and sophistry around before (whether from Museveni or Maaziveni!). Sometimes it’s easier to respond to something when it’s out in the open.

  • Maazi NCO

    The Monitor report has the MPs shouting something a little different (Our bill, our kids) but the same enthusiasm for jailing and hanging gays remains.

    This just gay propaganda all over again. Nobody in Parliament has any interest in getting anyone killed. Our interest is to ensure that promotion of gayism is quelled in our country and that no foreign country exercise veto power over our parliament. If we cannot influence lawmaking in US Congress, there is ABSOLUTELY no reason why US government and its European lapdog countries should have that right in Uganda. It really that simple !!!

    • http://www.patheos.com/blogs/warrenthrockmorton Warren

      Maazi – After reading your defense of the standing ovation for Bahati, I can understand why you do not reveal your true identity.

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  • Kurama Ismail Kakuru

    Uganda should not be taken as a dumping place. This time no homosexuality in our country. We dont want to be like Arabs and if it is serious we shall also demonstrate against this attack from western countries.we cant allow homosexuality into Uganda. Government should also look for some regulations on the so called development partners and religions which target Uganda in an angry/ hungry way.

    this is my post recommending the passing of the anti- homo sexuality bill and should be displayed to the public. comments about the post are welcome on my email; kakurukurama@yahoo.com

    Kurama Ismail Kakuru

    Uganda National Youth Council Member

  • Richard Willmer

    @ Kakuru

    There are many gay Ugandans, but most keep quiet about it … largely because of people like you.

    You don’t say anything ‘new’ in your statement; we’ve heard this kind of thing before … many many times!

  • Richard Willmer

    “This time no homosexuality in our country”. Hmmm – reminds one of this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rUOf4PSUDdQ


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