Uganda to ban 38 aid groups over gay rights

Uganda is to ban 38 non-governmental organisations (NGOs) it accuses of promoting homosexuality and “recruiting” children.

Homosexuality is illegal in Uganda and more than 30 other African nations, and activists say few Africans are openly gay, fearing imprisonment, persecution and losing their jobs.

Ethics minister Simon Lokodo yesterday said the aid groups being targeted were receiving support from abroad for Uganda’s homosexuals and accused gays and lesbians of “recruiting” children into homosexuality.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

“The NGOs are channels through which monies are channelled to [homosexuals] to recruit,” the minister, a former Catholic priest, said. He did not name the NGOs on the list.

A bill calling for harsh penalties against homosexuals and outlawing the “promotion” of homosexuality, including providing financial support to gays and lesbians, is pending in the east African nation’s parliament.

A previous bill called for the death penalty for repeat offenders, although the new version is expected to drop this clause, as well as calls for life imprisonment, after international condemnation and threats to aid.

Mr Lokodo said the NGOs would be deregistered for promoting homosexuality.

“I have got a record of meetings that they have held to empower, enhance and recruit [homosexuals],” he claimed.