Statement Calling on Uganda's President to Veto Anti-Homosexuality Legislation

Dec 28, 2013 Issues: Civil Rights, U.S.-Africa Policy

Today, Congressmember Karen Bass (D-Calif.), Ranking Member of the House Subcommittee on Africa, released the following statement calling on Uganda President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni to veto the recently passed Anti-Homosexuality Bill:

"I join with Senators Chris Coons (D-DE) and Dick Durbin (D-IL) in calling on Uganda President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni to veto the Uganda's parliament recently passed Anti-Homosexuality Bill. Rights of LGBT people around the world are human rights, and I am deeply concerned regarding the harassment, discrimination and violence that Uganda's LGBT community will certainly face should this legislation become law.

"As the world moves forward on ensuring equality under the law of the LGBT community, this proposed law is a giant step backwards. It sets a 14-year jail term for a first-time conviction for men who are convicted of engaging in sexual relations with other men, and a life imprisonment for committing aggravated homosexuality. The bill also criminalizes 'promotion and recognition' of homosexuality that will cause unnecessary harassment to health care workers who are working in Uganda to provide services to those living with HIV/AIDS.

"One of the great lessons of human history-- and one certainly that the United States knows all to well-- is that any government which legalizes the subjugation of a portion of its citizenry ultimately regrets that decision and will have to face the judgement of the world."