By Melanie Nathan, May 03, 2023. Yesterday we posted about Uganda's Parliament passing the Anti-Homosexuality Act 2023 for a second time after President Museveni had sent it back to Parliament. The amendments were minimal.
As we had noted, the resulting version is still unconstitutional and also according to HRAPF an Ugandan human rights law service organization, comprising of representing attorneys.
HRAPF's analysis is here:
Also the latest version of the Bill with HRAPF's tracked changes is at this link https://hrapf.org/?mdocs-file=11289&mdocs-url=false
In terns of legislative procedure, this means that the President has another 30 days from when the Bill is taken to him to attest to the Bill or send it back to Parliament with proposed amendments or the President can refuse to sign. In the latter case, the Bill becomes law after 30 days. In case he sends it back again, Parliament would then have the power to pass the Bill into law without the President's signature provided they have a two thirds majority.
So the next 30 days are critical and advocates can do a lot to possibly impact change. Here are examples of what African Human Rights Coalition is doing at this time:
AHRC is providing full briefings to multinational corporations about best practices in pressuring President Museveni to veto the Bill, to include releasing culturally appropriate statements for public to see standing;
AHRC is reaching out Parliamentarians to point out the flaws in the basis for voting for the Bill with educational pointers
AHRC is consulting with funders to reflect experience in years of experience in the field and region while encouraging flexible funding available be made available to LGBTQI+ organizations working in the region
AHRC continues as it has done for the past ten years to advocate for creative and imperative pathways for those forcibly displaced. We now implore upon governments to issue emergency humanitarian visas for all and any LGBTQI+ Ugandans and Ugandan LGBTQI+ human rights defenders. These pathways should extend to anyone in Africa subjected to anti-homosexuality persecution especially where government criminalizes, not just Uganda.
AHRC continues to provide mentoring, guidelines, case management, advocacy and direct humanitarian services, to include immediate triage, to anyone from Uganda forcibly displaced in this climate of hunting gays, persecution and violence, as it has done for the past 10 years. DONATIONS HERE.