Time for Uganda’s major players to pronounce themselves on the Bahati Bill 10

Want death/jail for homosexuals: Rebecca Kadaga and Cecilia Ogwal

We already know that Uganda’s Yoweri Museveni doesn’t like the Bahati anti-gay bill because he has said so publicly. Yes, it was wrung out of him by a persistent foreign press but Museveni is on record about his views which are that homosexuality is not new in Africa and, more pertinently, that he doesn’t want anything to do with this bill. His motivation for rejecting the bill is debatable of course – but that’s not our concern right now.

Don’t favor the bill: Kizza Besigye, Erias Lukwago, Yoweri Museveni

One of Yoweri Museveni’s long term advisers, John Nnagenda, is also on record condemning the bill because he, rightly, realizes that it is a bill against love.

We also know that the outgoing leader of the opposition, Forum for Democratic Changes’s (FDC) Kiiza Besigye would have decriminalized homosexuality if he had had the chance because he is on record saying so a month before the last elections which he lost to Yoweri Museveni.

Speaker of the House, Rebecca Kadaga, recently let herself be railroaded by personal political ambition into the anti-gay camp when she was ambushed by Canadian Foreign Minister, John Baird. She engaged in an undiplomatic spat with Baird which was not her creation, but which nonetheless ill-advisedly drove her into the cynical embrace of failed Ugandan politicians and criminal convicts.

Mike Mukula seems to see ‘jail time’ as an improvement on the bill

Right now she is,  to quote from Macbeth,  “stepped in so far that should [she] wade no more, returning were as tedious as go o’er.” Dokolo woman MP, Cecilia Ogwal needed no needling to go off like a fire cracker against homosexuality recently – something she had every right to do, and which put her sentiments on record.

A few years ago, around 2009, current mayor of Kampala, then member of

Always dapper: Mike Mukula (NRM’s Chairman in Uganda’s East)

Parliament for Kampala, Erias Lukwago went on record and explained that he thought the law was unnecessary but it was politically too risky not to support it. I for one read that to mean that he doesn’t support the bill.

But what are the rest of Uganda’s major politicians thinking about Parliament’s drive to criminalize ‘love?’

What does Uganda Federal Alliance’s (UFA) Beti Kamya think of the bill? Kamya has in the past waxed indignant about the sovereignty of Uganda’s Parliament but it’s not clear that she has ever clearly stated what she thinks about the merits/demerits of the bill itself.

Views on the bill unknown: Beti Kamya & Muhoozi Kainerugaba

FDC”s  presidential aspirants, Mugisha Muntu and Nandala Mafabi? I have asked Nandala Mafabi on his Twitter account about his views but am yet to see any response.

The Democratic Party’s (DP’) Betty Namboze? The National Resistance Movement’s (NRM)’s Mike Mukula, Janet Museveni? The army’s Muhozi Kainerugaba (also son to Yoweri Museveni)? He is not a politician but his name keeps on popping up as a potential president. He is also the de facto head of Uganda’s intelligence services so it stands to reason that his views on this bill are pertinent as, presumably, it will be part of his remit to collect ‘buggery’ data without which it will surely be impossible to prosecute homosexuals.

John Nagenda: This is a bill “against love”

Mike Mukula touts himself on his Twitter account as a 2016 presidential aspirant. Mukula seems to be suggesting that the bill will be more acceptable if the death penalty is removed and replaced with jail time. I have asked him why ‘loving’ should be penalized with jail time and I hope he will respond.

Museveni’s wife, Janet, hasn’t indicated so openly what her future political ambitions are but she is mentioned now and then as a possible shoo-in for 2016 should her husband, lo behold, give up the leadership mantle.

What are all these honorable and notable people’s views on the Bahati anti-gay bill? It is surely time for them to tell Uganda and the world what they think.

Why now?

Presidential aspirant: Mugisha Muntu

Simple. It is very likely that the bill will be passed by Uganda’s 9th Parliament. While no one should question the legitimacy of Uganda’s Parliament to debate even a heinous bill such as this one, it is important that politicians of whatever hue let their people know where they stand on it.

Beti Kamya and Muhoozi Kainerugaba, for instance, are not Parliamentarians. Yet they are leaders of sizable constituencies in Uganda, and so their views on a matter that seeks to criminalize homosexuals, their parents, doctors, priests and counselors should be made public.


should gay Ugandans be jailed for 14 years simply for being who who they are? Should they instead be executed? Should parents, friends, counselors, priests, doctors snitch on whoever they find out is gay or risk a 3-year jail term? Should there be a separate law at all to target homosexuals in a way that heterosexuals are not targeted for crimes that either sexual persuasion can commit?

These are the questions our leaders need to answer once and for all.

We wait …  with bated breath …


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  2. Politicians and other leaders religious civil society etc should oppose this bill if not on freedom for consenting adults to have relationships of their choice then on simple legal grounds. This is simply a fascist rice of legislation by criminalizing individuals before they actually commit any offense just by virtue of being who they are. Take the bill as it is and simply replace the word homosexual with any group or minority any faith group any ethnic or linguistic group and the insidious nature of this bill can be more easily seen for what it is. If they get away with it then who is next this is how fascism works and we have seen its outcome too many times before.

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  8. No offense but whether the law is passed or not gay people wont stop being gay, its how we passive it that will matter

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