Uganda court overturns anti-gay law

Uganda’s Constitutional Court has overturned the tough anti-gay legislation saying it is “null and void”.

The Court said the bill, which carried life imprisonment for “aggravated homosexuality” and banned the “promotion of homosexuality”, was passed by MPs in December without the necessary quorum.
Several donors have cut aid to Uganda since the law was adopted.
Earlier drafts of the anti-homosexuality act made it a crime not to report gay people but this clause was removed.
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 legislation stated the following:

  • 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.

Credit: BBC

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