Uganda’s Gay Pride rally


This video says about itself:

LGBT Ugandans Celebrate Gay Pride

9 August 2014

Gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender Ugandans can face a barrage of discrimination and sometimes violence in their everyday lives, but scores of them turned out to march in a gay pride parade Saturday. The gathering in the town of Entebbe was the first since an Ugandan court overturned an anti-gay law on a technicality.

From daily The Guardian in Britain:

Uganda holds first pride rally after ‘abominable’ anti-gay law overturned

Activists gather on shores of Lake Victoria to celebrate gay pride after law that gave homosexuals life sentence is thrown out

Chris Johnston and agencies

Saturday 9 August 2014 16.12 BST

Uganda has hosted its first gay pride rally since a draconian anti-homosexuality law was overturned by the courts.

Sandra Ntebi, organiser of the rally held on Saturday in Entebbe, 35km from the capital Kampala, said police had granted permission for the invitation-only “Uganda Pride” event.

“This event is to bring us together. Everyone was in hiding before because of the anti-homosexuality law,” she said. “It is a happy day for all of us, getting together.”

The overturned law, condemned as “abominable” by rights groups but popular among many Ugandans, called for proven homosexuals to be jailed for life.

The constitutional court rejected the law on a technicality on 1 August, six months after it took effect. The government swiftly filed an appeal, while MPs have signed a petition for a new vote on the bill.

Homosexuality remains illegal in Uganda, punishable by a jail sentence. However, it is no longer illegal to promote homosexuality and Ugandans are no longer obliged to denounce gays to the authorities.

Amid music, dancing and laughter, activists gathered in a park on the shores of Lake Victoria, close to the country’s presidential palace. “Some Ugandans are gay. Get over it,” read one sticker a man had pasted onto his face.

Ugandan deputy attorney-general Fred Ruhinda said that government lawyers had lodged an appeal against the ruling at the supreme court, the country’s highest court.

“We are unsatisfied with the court ruling,” he said. “The law was not intended to victimise gay people, it was for the common good.”

In their surprise ruling last week, judges said it had been passed without the necessary quorum of MPs in parliament.

Rights groups said the law triggered a sharp increase in arrests and assaults on members of the country’s lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community.

Homophobia is rampant in Uganda, where American-style evangelical Christianity is increasingly popular.

Gay men and women face frequent harassment and threats of violence, but activists celebrated openly on Saturday.

“Since I discovered I was gay I feared coming out, but now I have the courage after the law was thrown out,” said Alex Musoke, one of more than 100 people at the event.

One pair of activists waved a rainbow flag with a slogan appealing for people to “join hands” to end the “genocide” of homosexuals. There were few police in attendance and no protestors.

Critics said President Yoweri Museveni signed the law to win domestic support ahead of a presidential election set for 2016, which would be his 30th year in power.

However, it lost him friends abroad, with several international donors freezing or redirecting millions of dollars of government aid, saying the country had violated human rights and democratic principles.

US secretary of state John Kerry likened the law to antisemitic legislation in Nazi Germany.

Gay rights activists say the battle is not over. MPs have signed a petition calling for a new vote on the bill and to bypass parliamentary rules that require it be formally reintroduced from scratch – a process that could take years.

Britain: The Gay Football Supporters’ Network (GFSN) will lead the largest-ever football presence at a Pride event in Britain, at this years march in Manchester on Saturday: here.

Ugandan court scraps anti-LGBTQ law


The Constitutional Court in Uganda has been packed this week for the hearings about the anti-gay legislation

From the BBC:

1 August 2014 Last updated at 12:07 GMT

Uganda court annuls anti-homosexuality law

Uganda’s Constitutional Court has annulled tough anti-gay legislation signed into law in February.

It ruled that the bill was passed by MPs in December without the requisite quorum and was therefore illegal.

Homosexual acts were already illegal, but the new law allowed for life imprisonment for “aggravated homosexuality” and banned the “promotion of homosexuality”.

Several donors have cut aid to Uganda since the law was adopted.

‘Null and void’

Earlier drafts of the anti-homosexuality act made it a crime not to report gay people – which would have made it impossible to live as openly gay – but this clause was removed.

However the legislation that was passed in parliament was “null and void”, the presiding judge at the Constitutional Court said, as not enough lawmakers had been present to vote on the bill.

The law, which was signed by President Yoweri Museveni in February, toughened up existing laws.

Lesbians were covered for the first time and those found living in a same-sex marriage could have been sentenced to life imprisonment.

The challenge to the law was brought by 10 petitioners, including academics, journalists, both ruling and opposition MPs, human rights activists and rights groups.

“The retrogressive anti-homosexuality act of Uganda has been struck down by the constitutional court – it’s now dead as a door nail,” the AFP news agency quotes prominent journalist Andrew Mwenda, one of the petitioners, as saying.

Kosiya Kasibayo, a lawyer for the state, said a decision had not been made on whether to appeal against the ruling in the Supreme Court, the Associate Press news agency reports.

The BBC’s Catherine Byaruhanga in the capital, Kampala, says supporters of the anti-gay laws have been angered by the ruling of the five judges.

Pastor Martin Ssempa, a vocal backer of the anti-homosexuality legislation, told the BBC his supporters would be asking parliament to investigate the impartiality of the judiciary.

Uganda’s anti-homosexuality act:

Life imprisonment for gay sex, including oral sex
Life imprisonment for “aggravated homosexuality”, including sex with a minor or while HIV-positive
Life imprisonment for living in a same-sex marriage
Seven years for “attempting to commit homosexuality”
Between five and seven years in jail or a $40,700 (£24,500) fine or both for the promotion of homosexuality
Businesses or non-governmental organisations found guilty of the promotion of homosexuality would have their certificates of registration cancelled and directors could face seven years in jail.

World Migratory Bird Day celebrated in Uganda


This video is about birds in Uganda.

From BirdLife:

World Migratory Bird day celebrations in Kasese District, Uganda

By Obaka Torto, Tuesday, 10/06/2014 – 15:15

On 10th May 2014 a group of conservation organizations gathered at the Katwe Eco-tourism centre (KATIC) ground in Katwe-Kabatooro town council, Kasese District Uganda to mark the World Migratory Bird Day (WMBD). The event was attended by members of local conservation groups, namely, Mabamba Wetland Eco-tourism Association and Lutembe Wetland Users Association as well as government agencies such as the Ministry of Tourism, Wildlife and Antiquities and Uganda Wildlife Authority. Non Governmental Organsations were represented by Nature Uganda and the Uganda Wildlife Society. These groups came together to highlight the contribution of birds and avi-tourism (tourism from birds) to the economic development of Kabatooro town council, Uganda.

The event kicked off with a nature walk to Lake Munyanyange where 78 bird migratory bird species were recorded including the Lesser Flamingo Phoeniconaias minorRuff Philomachus pugnax, Little Stint Calidris minuta, Curlew Sandpiper Calidris ferruginea and Lesser Black-backed Gull Larus fuscus. This was followed by an exercise dubbed “Keep Katwe Clean”. It involved cleaning Katwe-Kabatoro town and the area around Katwe Salt Lake. The exercise was aimed at raising awareness on solid waste management as a means of maintaining the integrity of sites used by migratory birds. Sanitary equipment was distributed to two Katwe community groups and five schools in Katwe-Kabatooro town council. The event was spiced up with songs and poems from Kanyiginya Drama Actors – a local performance group that treats visitors to vibrant music and drama performances at KATIC.

The event was co-organized by Nature Uganda (BirdLife Partner in Uganda), Ministry of Tourism, Wildlife and Antiquities, Uganda Wildlife Authority, Uganda Wildlife Society and  KATIC. World Migratory Bird Day was initiated in 2006 and is an annual awareness-raising campaign highlighting the need for the protection of migratory birds and their habitats. This year’s theme was ‘Destination Flyways: Migratory Birds and Tourism’. For more information see www.worldmigratorybirdday.org

Story by Dianah Nalwanga/Nature Uganda and Olivia Adhiambo/BirdLife International.

World Migratory Bird Day 2014: Lake Natron, Tanzania – a Global Tourism Spot: here.

New scientific evidence confirms that legal protection of bird species do work. A recent study focusing in Eastern Europe shows that the rate of decline of protected species was approximately halved after the onset of protection. The study[1], published in the leading journal Biological Conservation, was led by scientists from the Czech Republic and the German Biodiversity and Climate Research Centre and involved experts from across Europe, including BirdLife: here.

Life imprisonment for Ugandan gay people?


This video from the USA says about itself:

Yup, She’s DEFENDING Uganda’s Anti-Gay Laws!

23 February 2014

“The right-wing women’s group Concerned Women for America (CWFA) expressed outrage on Sunday that President Barack Obama condemned a Ugandan anti-LGBT bill that would punish homosexual behavior with lifetime imprisonment.

According to the Joe My God blog, CWFA spokesperson Janice Shaw Crouse said that the president’s “arrogance is breathtaking” for saying that [the] Ugandan government should stop imprisoning and torturing men it suspects of being gay.

On Sunday, Obama released an official White House statement condemning Uganda’s proposed law outlawing same sex marriages and imposing lifetime prison sentences for repeated homosexual acts.”

Read more here.

From daily The Guardian in Britain:

Ugandan men to go on trial on homosexuality charges

Kim Mukisa and Jackson Mukasa face life imprisonment if found guilty in first such case since introduction of new anti-gay law

Barbara Among in Kampala

Thursday 17 April 2014 16.37 BST

Two Ugandan men will go on trial next month accused of homosexuality, the first people to be charged since a controversial new anti-gay law was passed.

Prosecutors said on Wednesday that they had sufficient evidence against Kim Mukisa and Jackson Mukasa, who denied the charges when they first appeared in court earlier this year. They have been held in Luziro prison in Kampala since December.

Mukisa, 24, a businessman, was charged with “having sexual knowledge of a person against the order of nature” and Mukasa, 19, with permitting a person to have sexual knowledge of him against the order of nature.

They are the first Ugandans to face trial on homosexuality charges, with an earlier case collapsing before it reached court and the majority of those arrested paying stiff fines to avoid prison.

Uganda‘s president Yoweri Museveni signed the anti-gay law in February. It punishes first-time offenders with 14 years in jail and allows life imprisonment as the penalty for acts of “aggravated homosexuality”.

Since the law was passed several donors have cut aid to Uganda, while others have diverted development support to projects that promote human rights.

Mukisa and Mukasa, however, have been charged under the 1950 Penal Code Act, which also prescribes life imprisonment if a person is found guilty of homosexual acts.

They are expected to defend themselves during the trial, which is scheduled to start on 7 May.

Britain: KFC ‘sorry’ after lesbian couple are kicked out of Bath restaurant for ‘heavy petting': here.

Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby says the Anglican Church cannot support same-sex marriage: here.

USA: Mayor who fired lesbian police chief caught on tape in homophobic tirade: here.

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