APPG on HIV and AIDS condemns the Ugandan Government Anti-Homosexuality Bill

24th February 2014

APPG on HIV and AIDS condemns the Ugandan Government Anti-Homosexuality Bill

Today President Museveni signed the Anti-Homosexuality Bill into Ugandan law. The Bill will intensify anti-homosexuality legislation in Uganda, threatening life-sentences in jail to those who are found to have had homosexual sex (or “aggravated homosexuality”) and imprisoning those who are seen to “aid and abet” homosexuality in any way. This means it is now a criminal offence for a person not to report a family member, friend or neighbour for "homosexual behavior and related practices" and also applies to those in authority.

Chair of the APPG Pamela Nash said:

“This legislation is a massive breech of the human rights of Ugandans. It is a violation of Uganda’s own Constitution, it goes against all international human rights treaties and will have extremely dangerous repercussions for public health.

The LGBT community will be frightened to seek HIV testing or treatment, as health professionals will now be obliged to alert authorities if someone is having homosexual sex.

Uganda is the only African country with rising rates of new HIV infections in marked contrast to rest of the continent.”

“Men who have sex with men are 13 times more likely to contract HIV than the general population. By criminalizing homosexuality the Ugandan Government is putting the AIDS response in real danger. Given that the Ugandan Government is already failing to keep the epidemic under control, now is not the time to be implementing harmful legislation. It is well documented that this approach will threaten public health efforts and the UK Government needs to speak out urgently against it.”