Today saw a global day of protest around the world as Uganda awaits president's decision on whether anti-gay bill will become law.
You can see pictures and comments from lots of participants on the Facebook page Global Day of Action Against the Anti Homosexuality Bill in Uganda.
On 20th December 2013, The Lesbian and Gay Bisexual Transgender Community in Uganda woke up to the grim news that the Anti Homosexuality bill, which had been shelved at the end of 2012 had been passed by Parliament. The bill was passed without Quorum and without Prior mandatory inclusion on the Parliament Order Paper. The bill, if passed into law will be a disaster to the Human Rights of LGBT people, a disaster to public health and the fight against HIV/AIDS.
Recent reports in the national and International Media have indicated that the President ‘will not sign’ the bill and hence it is generally believed that the bill is no longer a threat.
We would like to reiterate that this bill is still a huge threat and a treasure to the majority of Ugandans.
It is also worth to note that the power of ascension of a bill doesn’t lay primarily with the President of Uganda. The Parliament of Uganda can also pass the bill into law!
The Constitution provides that the president shall within 30 days after a bill is presented to him/her either:-
- Assent to the bill
- Return the bill to parliament with a request that the bill or a particular provision of it be reconsidered by parliament; or
- Notify the speaker in writing about the decision
- The bill may be reconsidered and then presented for the president’s approval. However it may become law without the president’s assent if he/she returns it to parliament two times. It should have the support of at least two-thirds of all MPs.
Why the Day of Action?
If we remain silent, we shall suffer at the hands of Ugandan leaders that have no respect for Human Rights! Silence will not protect us!! We need to speak out against Injustice; We need to speak out FOR Human Rights! We need to speak out against the Anti Homosexuality Bill. We need you to Let Uganda know, through this Day of Action, that the world is watching. We Must demand Justice and respect for Human Rights for all Ugandans.
Reach out to your family, your co-worker, your friend, your partner; Make sure they join you in speaking out for Human Rights.
Thanks You for the Solidarity!
Civil Society Coalition on Human Rights and Constitutional Law
There is also a protest outside Paul Shinner's cafe in the town of St. Neots, UK, planned for 15th February. There's a protest page here.