Wednesday, April 3, 2024

Shamefully, Uganda top court rejects to overturn harsh anti-gay law

Uganda's Constitutional Court rejected to scrap a harsh anti-gay law that is considered one of the toughest in the world. 

The legislation was adopted in May last year, triggering outrage among the LGBTQ community, rights campaigners, the United Nations and Western powers.

It imposes penalties of up to life in prison for consensual same-sex relations and contains provisions that make "aggravated homosexuality" an offense punishable by death in Uganda.

"We decline to nullify the Anti-Homosexuality Act 2023 in its entirety, neither will we grant a permanent injunction against its enforcement," Richard Buteera, Uganda's deputy chief justice and head of the court, said in the landmark ruling.

The decision was greeted with dismay by opponents of the law, although the five-judge bench did strike out several provisions it said were inconsistent with international rights conventions.

This law violates basic human rights and sets a dangerous precedent for discrimination and persecution against the LGBTQ community. Same-sex relationships were already against the law in Uganda before the signing of the bill, as they are in more than half of countries in Africa.

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