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Gays law: Sweden cuts tourism links with Jinja

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President Museveni (M) and Jinja mayor Kezaale Baswaale (L) hand over a bottle containing water from Source of the Nile to an official from the embassy of Sweden in Uganda in March 2013. [PHOTO BY DENIS EDEMA].  

By Isaac Mufumba

Posted  Thursday, March 20  2014 at  20:24
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Jinja.

The Swedish town of Skelleftea has suspended activities under a tourism promotion agreement with Jinja to protest the enactment of the anti homosexuality law.

President Museveni recently signed into law the Bill.
Skelleftea entered the agreement with Jinja Town Board in 2012 where it was agreed that the two would work together on two major activities namely “Paint the City Bright” and “Relay from Jinja to Northern Sweden”, both of which were launched in Jinja on May 4, 2013 by President Museveni.

“Paint the City Bright” saw numerous buildings painted to give Jinja the look of a bright city while “Relay from Jinja to northern Sweden” saw containers shaped like Uganda’s Nile Perch fish filled with water from the source of the Nile and carried to begin a northward journey adjacent to the Nile, over the Mediterranean and Europe.

The bottles which are due to arrive in Sweden in the summer had been expected to be handed over to mayors of various municipalities as part of the tourism promotion of Jinja, but a March 14 letter addressed to Jinja Mayor Hajji Muhammad Baswari Kezaala, has cast a dark shadow over such a development.

According to the letter, which was signed by the head of the Steering Committee of Skelleftea-Jinja Cooperation, Ms Ann-Christin Westerlund, and three members, there is a strong feeling among the Swedes that the agreement should be revoked.

“However, we want to postpone the cooperation around developing the tourism industry through events until we can see how the new law will affect the people,” reads the letter in part.