Saturday, 29 June 2013

David Cecil Update

Quick update on Devid Cecil, the British playwright deported from Uganda for staging an LGBTI play. He is trying to overturn his expulsion so that he can rejoin his family in the country.

Thrown out of Africa for staging a gay play – but desperate to return again: A British film producer deported to the UK is fighting to get back to his family in Uganda

After staging the first play in Uganda which addressed the theme of homosexuality, The River and the Mountain, the British film producer was arrested and deported back to the UK without a proper police investigation or court hearing. He left behind two children, aged one and two, his girlfriend of eight years, and his business. Uganda’s Media Council insisted that the play promoted homosexuality and was against the national culture...

Cecil’s opinions on gay rights, which he describes as “complicated”, have brought him on a collision course with both human rights activists, who believe he is not committed enough to the cause, and the Ugandan government. “I think people who support homosexuality do not understand the anxiety in African countries about the disintegration of the family,” he says...

He adds: “I did not come to Uganda to piss anyone off. It is a vibrant African country that belongs to Africans. All I wanted to do was make my humble contribution.”...

He adds that while he does not support the Anti-Homosexuality Bill that was proposed by Ugandan MP David Bahati, the solution is not legislating either for or against it. “When you legislate, you leave the power of guidance to the state. It becomes a question of legal or illegal and it is devoid of humanity,” he says. “Legislation will only antagonise people.”

Not sure we entirely agree with David on that one. Legislating for human rights being devoid of humanity? It's hard to argue that legislating against slavery, rape, or hate crimes has stripped countries implementing those laws of their humanity. 

So far, Uganda hasn't needed to legislate against LGBTI people for them to be beaten and murdered. If you continue without legislation to protect LGBTI people, it's little different to criminalising it, as attacks will continue on a community scale and victims will have nowhere to turn to for protection. A government may be elected by a proportion of the people, but it also has a duty of care to all of its citizens.

We wish him the best of luck in returning to his family.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Feel free to comment. Posts are moderated so there may be a delay before they appear. Thanks for reading!