Finally, President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni has assented to the famous Anti Homosexuality Bill, 2023 which was passed by parliament early this month, introducing tough punishments and fines for perpetrators, financiers, and promoters of homosexuality.
Death penalty awaits those convicted of aggravated Homosexuality, while those convicted for engaging in homosexual acts are to face 20 years in jail.
The President’s assent to the Anti Homosexuality Bill, 2023 was announced by the speaker of parliament Anita Among early today indicating that five other bills passed recently by parliament had been signed into law. The bill first passed by parliament in March was returned to parliament in April for reconsideration, especially on some clauses that needed clarity, and was passed again in Early May with reforms.
The bill which was moved by the Bugiri municipality legislator Asumani Basalirwa will see anyone engaging in acts of homosexuality facing 20 years in jail while the death penalty awaits anyone engaging in aggravated homosexuality.
The provisions embedded in the law seek to protect the traditional family by prohibiting any form of sexual relations between persons of the same sex and the promotion of such acts. It also aims to address the gaps in other laws in Uganda including the Penal Code Act, Cap 120, as well as supplement provisions of the Constitution by criminalizing same-sex acts.
A law slaps a penalty of shs1 billion on a legal entity convicted of promoting homosexuality whereas an attempt to perform the act attracts a seven-year prison term.
The law provides for a three-year imprisonment for a child convicted of the act of homosexuality which is in line with section 94(1) (g) of the Children Act, Cap 120.
Persons who knowingly allow their premises to be used for acts of homosexuality face 7 years in jail upon conviction while those who fail to report acts of homosexuality on children and vulnerable persons while having knowledge about them face a fine of Ushs10 million or 5 years in jail.
The mover of the bill Asuman Basalirwa who addressed the press shortly after the news of assent clarified several issues which have been used by critics of the bill to misrepresent it.
Basalirwa vowed to fight at all fronts to ensure that this bill is not thwarted by courts of law like what happened to the first Anti-Gay bill that was enacted by the 9th parliament and nullified by the constitutional court on grounds of lack of quorum.
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