Uganda’s lawmakers passed Friday a law that punishes “aggravated homosexuality” with life imprisonment. The new law eliminated the death penalty introduced in 2010, when taking position the US President Barack Obama considered it as “odious”. The motivation for the actual law, exposed in the parliament, was that homosexuals from the West destroy Ugandan families recruiting Ugandan children into the gay lifestyle.
Same-sex relationships are currently illegal in Uganda where the endemic homophobia is very strong. However, according to human rights organizations, at least 500,000 gay people live in Uganda, which has a total population of 31 million. The tradition to punish the “unnatural sex” came from the old colonial authorities.
At it’s supposed after comparing the old related laws in Uganda, “aggravated homosexuality” means serial offenders, engaging gay relations after being HIV positive or engaging sexual acts with those under 18 years age.
Before the actual variant of the law, Uganda’s Minister of Ethics and Integrity, James Nsaba Buturo appreciated: “we now think a life sentence could be better because it gives room for offenders to be rehabilitated; killing them might not be helpful.”