National

More MPs want gays law back

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By Solomon Arinaitwe

Posted  Thursday, August 7  2014 at  09:26

In Summary

By yesterday, 158 legislators had appended their signatures to a petition to re-table the Bill.

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Parliament- The Ndorwa West MP, Mr David Bahati, yesterday joined 158 MPs in signing a document in support of a drive to re-introduce the nullified Anti-Homosexuality Act 2014.

Mr Bahati dismissed last week’s Constitutional Court ruling as an “empty victory” for opponents of the Law.

Mr Bahati tabled the Bill in 2009 as a private members initiative, much to the chagrin of Western countries which denounced it as an affront to human rights and reacted by cutting donor aid when it was passed.

On Friday last week, the Constitutional Court nullified the Act, on grounds that Parliament passed it without the required quorum.

The court’s action to strike out the law from Uganda’s statute books in spite of protests from the State that there was no proof of lack of quorum when the law was enacted, triggered a backlash at Parliament where MPs launched a drive to re-introduce in Parliament and pass the Bill.
By yesterday evening, the drive had garnered the support of 158 MPs.

In a telephone interview yesterday, Mr Bahati said he would again take the lead in presenting the Bill, reiterating that it is the shield for the Ugandan society from practices that are a threat to children, family values and posterity.

“We want to rectify the procedural issue that court pointed out. MPs are making a statement that the when the foundation of this nation is destroyed, the representatives of the people cannot stand by and look on. What happened on Friday was an empty victory .We are going to rectify what the court decided,” Mr Bahati said.

Kawempe North MP Latif Sebaggala, the brainchild of the drive to collect signatures, yesterday indicated that a committee will be formed next Tuesday to chart a way forward on how the Bill will be re-introduced.

sarinaitwe@ug.nationmdia.com