Uganda's Parliament reportedly has dropped consideration of the notorious Anti-Homosexuality Bill that has been pending since 2009.
The measure would imprison for life anyone convicted of "the offense of homosexuality," punish "aggravated homosexuality" (repeat offenses, or having gay sex while being HIV-positive) with the death penalty, forbid "promotion of homosexuality" and incarcerate gay-rights defenders, and jail individuals in positions of authority for up to three years if they fail to report within 24 hours the existence of all LGBT people or sympathizers known to them.
Ugandan LGBT activists are not relaxing, however, because in announcing that the bill is being abandoned, a government spokesman added that "most" of the same provisions are contained in another active bill, the Sexual Offenses Bill. No details were provided.
"We have not completely let down our guard, at least not until May when this Parliament term comes to an end," said Adrian Jjuuko, executive director Human Rights Awareness and Promotion Forum Uganda. "One battle might have been won, but the war on the other fronts clearly goes on. What the government has done is to remove this 'troublesome' bill and still reach the same conclusions using existing laws and new bills."
Assistance: Bill Kelley