A new report released yesterday in Kampala indicates it will be difficult to implement the recently passed Anti-Homosexuality Bill if signed into law.
The report notes that it would be hard to prove one’s sexual orientation and also to sustain charges against such offences. The report launched by Civil Society Coalition on Human Rights and Constitutional Law, critiques the enforcement of laws criminalising same-sex marriages and conduct in Uganda.
“The proposed Anti-Homosexuality Bill despite having elaborate provisions will be difficult to enforce since the evidence required is the same as that required now,” reads the report in part. “The rest of the provisions like the promotion of homosexuality and the nullification of the international instruments will simply, render human rights and public health work impossible, thus making Uganda a pariah state,” the report adds.
The report further says the presence of archaic and repressive laws that cannot be enforced brings an unnecessary financial burden on the tax payer. “Public money spent on the enforcement of such a law at the expense of other developmental projects is not worthwhile,” the report says. Recently Parliament, after years of controversy, passed the Anti-Homosexuality Bill into an Act. It outlines punishments for certain acts of homosexuality with life in prison.
The passed Bill awaits assenting by President Museveni who has since said he will first study it before he can sign it into law. Prime Minister Amama Mbabazi strenuously objected to the enactment of the law and has since spoken out against it at different fora, including at a recent briefing of Uganda’s ambassadors.
At the moment, the NRM caucus is also poised to meet and discuss this passed Bill intended to strike out controversial clauses. It is already illegal in Uganda to engage in sexual relations against the order of nature.
Speaking to the media in Kampala yesterday, Mr Ibin Ssenkumbi, the Kampala Metropolitan Police spokesperson, said the law would be implementable since the force has both male and female officers who can check to ascertain one’s sexual orientation.