Friday, 28 February 2014



Please download the following files and fax them to the numbers listed below. Or send your own! You can use any free online faxing service, as you are expressing an opinion, you are engaging in freedom of speech, not in spam or harassment.  That said, it is recommended you do so behind Tor and/or a VPN.  We obviously aren't dealing with people who appreciate subtlety in human interaction.  


Greetings Yoweri Museveni, and other Anti-Homosexuality Bill thugs. We’ve been watching you for quite a while now. We even were so kind as to jostle you a bit in the past to try and bring you to your senses. However, you still fail to see the errors of your ways. Rampant child rape plagues your nation. Your own so-called “Ministry of Ethics and Integrity” is headed by someone who seems to be ok with that fact. All too often we’ve seen the abuse of human rights as a symptom of the mass corruption that lurks in the shadows. You have declared war on the world’s LGBT citizens and the time has come for us to make good on our promises to you.  Each day we will continue to take down targets we deem as responsible for the deaths of LGBT people in Uganda. We will continue until you not only repeal these despicable laws but actually provide laws securing the dignity of your citizens humanity and establishing the framework for their prosperity as well.  
     
    We Are Anonymous.
    We Are Legion.
    We Do Not Forgive.
    We Never Forget.
    Expect Us.


Wrong Side of History - Whoopi Goldberg

Thursday, 27 February 2014

Facebook is a Huge Letdown


A while back we gave the thumbs-up to Facebook for its swift removal of an anti-gay hate crusader's profile page.

How that has changed.

Whereas we'd never expect them to cease operating in Uganda, as one article claimed, we would at least like to see a return to the day when threatening to burn gay people alive got you banned - quickly.

We recently highlighted two Facebook homophobes, Babughirana Augustine Snr. and Isabirye Richard, who were inciting violence against gay people.

Whereas Facebook eventually removed Isabirye Richard's profile it took days, and many, many complaints over his flood of horrific posts. Whilst Facebook refused to act, he was busy outing gay people and calling on others to hunt them down. Facebook's response was a mixture of 'yes, this violates our terms' and 'get over it and just ignore the guy.'

Either someone's Facebook page is a hate-filled stream of bile, or it isn't. His clearly was - what took so long to see that?

Good riddance to bad rubbish, but there's plenty more out there.

Wednesday, 26 February 2014

Call to Action

Kill the Gays Bill Orchestrator, Scott Lively

E-mail from the Centre for Constitutional Rights worth sharing:

Thank you for supporting the case against U.S. anti-gay extremist Scott Lively and for standing with Sexual Minorities Uganda (SMUG) at this critical time. As you may have read, Uganda’s President Museveni signed the Anti-Homosexuality Bill (AHB) into law yesterday, endangering the lives of all LGBTI Ugandans and criminalizing the work of SMUG and other LGBTI advocacy groups. 
It’s urgent that you take action today. 
Scott Lively got what he’s been pushing for in Uganda for over a decade.LGBTI Ugandans’ Facebook posts, tweets, media interviews, gatherings, organizations, relationships and very existence are now illegal. LGBTI Ugandans can now be imprisoned for life for “aggravated homosexuality.” 
Here are two ways you can fight back today: 
1) Share www.crowdrise.com/StopScottLively with your friends via email, Facebook,Twitter, Tumblr and Pinterest and include the hashtags #stopscottlively and #AHB. Ask them to join you in supporting this campaign by making their own gift to Stop Scott Lively. 
2) Share this New York Times article (http://nyti.ms/1o3vNt4) via email, Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr and Pinterest. The article highlights SMUG’s courageous response in the face of persecution and political repression. 
We must hold Scott Lively accountable for his actions and stop him from causing more harm. SMUG and CCR’s case against Scott Lively has the ability to stop him and other U.S. anti-gay extremists who are traveling around “weaponizing” religion to persecute LGBT people—from Arizona to Kansas, Russia to Nigeria. 
Thank you for standing with SMUG and CCR today! 
Jeremy Rye, Center for Constitutional Rights

Latest from Anonymouse LGBT Legion:

We warned Museveni long ago. He should've expected us. Oh yeah RedPepper... You had it coming too. #TANGODOWN STATEHOUSE.GO.UG PARLIAMENT.GO.UG REDPEPPER.CO.UG #OPKATO

Red Pepper appears to have a nasty case of DoS, it's been down all evening. 

What a shame.

Those interested in hactivism and ethical hacking can find introductions here, or simply start creating deviant art, blogging, and distributing memes.

We don't condone criminal activity, but neither do we condone criminals who act under the impunity of corrupt and immoral political legislation. When you actively persecute people because of their sexual orientation, the least you deserve is to be taken offline.


Go Hillary!


Tuesday, 25 February 2014

Aid Frozen to Uganda



Norway, Denmark and The Netherlands have become the first countries to either redirect aid away from the Ugandan Government or freeze aid. 
The Netherlands froze $9.6 million in aid to Uganda’s legal system, saying that if Uganda’s courts were to enforce the country’s new harsh laws further criminalizing homosexuality then they did not want to assist that process. 
Denmark and Norway have also said they both planned to redirect around $8.5 million in aid, to a combined total of $17 million, away from the Ugandan Government – with that money instead going to Non-Government Organizations and human rights groups in Uganda. 

These are the first cuts directly announced in response to signing the bill into law.


The United Kingdom has with immediate effect suspended all its direct financial UK aid to Uganda over the massive theft of funds in the Office of the Prime Minister (OPM).

And this time last year Canada cut funding to evangelical organisations responsible for preaching homophobia and started financially backing human rights groups protesting the bill.

Although many Ugandan campaigners have urged against aid cuts, as they say the people of Uganda will suffer, the money was already being paid to a highly corrupt government, so it's questionable how much financial aid actually did reach desperate civilians at grassroots level.

It is also impossible to explain to hard-working citizens in countries with human rights legislation why their hard-earned money is being spent not on making the world a better place, but on supporting human rights abuses and policies that directly contravene their own laws.

Diplomacy has failed, cutting direct financial aid seems the only option left. 

This is not the same as stopping aid work. NGOs that work to promote human rights in Uganda may still be funded, and receive even more money, which is being redirected to them instead of the government. It just means less money in the pockets of corrupt and ignorant politicians.

Surely we can all agree that's a good thing?


[UPDATE: Sweden stops aid and the World Bank suspends it.]

Red Pepper Spews Hatred

Absolutely heartbreaking. The notorious hate rag Red Pepper publishes its first front page since the bill became law. There will be more blood on their hands before too long.



Monday, 24 February 2014

Anti Gay Bill Signed into Law



The depth and breadth of ignorance from Uganda's President Meseveni is breathtaking. 

He has just signed the Bahati Bill into law.

You can watch his speech on the BBC - it is chilling to think he is in charge of an entire country.

Such an appalling, uneducated man, backed up by a cabinet of appallingly uneducated religious fundamentalists.

But we're not going to focus on them. We're going to focus on the brave men and women fighting the bill, and the ongoing battle for equality and human rights.

More coverage on Melanie Natha's blog.

This is just the beginning, not the end.

Sunday, 23 February 2014

What the World Can Do



It covers things like:

  • Demonstrating
  • Lobbying Corporations
  • Lobby MPs and Politicians
  • Lobbying Celebrities & Religious Leaders


If you're looking for something to financially contribute to, there's the Rescue Fund to Help LGBT People Escape Africa. We're normally a bit cautious about appeals like this, but it's being promoted by Melanie Nathan, who is a well known and respected human rights activist - so we're convinced it's legit.

Saturday, 22 February 2014

Museveni Consults US on Gay Science


From the guys who brought you the CAMOVA Brief, new, improved Presidential Brief, with added homophobia and extra ignorance: 

Uganda MPs falsified gay report: The ministerial team tasked with advising President Yoweri Museveni on homosexuality falsified and twisted information in an expert scientific report.

Documents in the possession of the Mail & Guardian show that the Ugandan ministerial task team asked by the president to advise him on homosexuality falsified the information contained in the report given by medical and psychological experts, twisting it to show that homosexuality should indeed be further criminalised.

Seriously, anyone is the least bit surprised by this?

Still, it's led to: 

Uganda's Yoweri Museveni puts anti-gay legislation on hold: Yoweri Museveni challenges US scientists to advise on whether homosexuality is caused by nature or nurture

President Yoweri Museveni of Uganda has put harsh anti-gay legislation on hold while he seeks advice from American scientists on whether homosexuality is caused by nature or nurture.

The obvious problem we have here, is that they're expecting scientists to talk to religious nutcases.


(click for a clearer view of the problem)

Friday, 21 February 2014

Mugisha in Detroit

Activist, Frank Mugisha

Veteran Ugandan LGBTI activist Frank Mugisha has been in Detroit, raising awareness of the bill this week:


As Michigan prepares to potentially legalize gay marriage next week, Frank Mugisha, an LGBT rights activist from Uganda, says his country is about to make homosexuality a crime punishable by life in prison... 
The 34-year-old spoke on a panel at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African-American History in Detroit Thursday at an event sponsored by Freedom House, a Detroit-based organization that assists political refugees and human trafficking victims -- an increasing number coming from Uganda -- obtain asylum in the U.S... 
Mugisha, who won the 2011 Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights Award for his outspoken advocacy, shared what it was like to grow up gay in his hometown, Kampala.

Stay strong, Frank. You're an outstanding campaigner for human rights!

What are the Implications?


Well, it's been quite a week so far, since President Museveni agreed to sign the Anti-Gay Bill in Uganda, after it became apparent he was never going to say 'no'.

US President Obama has come under criticism for his disappointing response to the announcement, but how hard is it to decide what to do?

Especially when you have conflicting messages on how best to campaign.

On the one hand you're told to butt out of foreign affairs: How the west's attempts to stop the anti-gay bill could hurt Ugandan LGBTIs

The US, UK and other western countries need to be careful their efforts to tackle homophobia in Uganda don't do more harm than good.

On the other hand you're being told your measures aren't tough enough: Quiet diplomacy faulted for Africa's anti-gay laws

[I]nternational gay rights activists also blame donor countries, including the United States, which favor behind-the-scenes diplomacy intended to avoid a backlash that might come from more forceful engagement. 
"Quiet diplomacy up to the final moment clearly has failed," said Maria Burnett, senior Africa researcher for Human Rights Watch.

Clearly you can't please everyone all of the time, and with no united voice from global campaigners saying 'look, this is what you should be doing, we all agree...' it's little wonder the world's super powers twiddle their thumbs and return to other pressing (and vote-winning) home issues.

There is also no unified approach to sanctions. One article this week has been discussing: Uganda's anti-gay bill: What will be the implications on donor aid? - How will the US and Europe react if Uganda really does make the bill law and what do LGBTI Ugandans want?

Perhaps that question can better be answered by looking at the effects Canadian, Irish, Swedish and UK aid cuts have already had on the country? 

Rather than throwing up suppositions over the future, look for the precedent.


Cutting off diplomatic ties is pretty final. Which brings us back to the question: does quiet diplomacy work?

Whilst Ugandan activists have long argued that tough measures enrage the homophobes and make things worse, Western activists say that international governments are not doing enough and should flex their muscles more.

It's a stalemate of campaigning methodology that seriously needs resolving before things can progress. 

Fighting for human rights takes a lot of energy, which is easily depleted when you fight amongst yourselves. It would seem that a unified approach would be rather helpful about now.

Thursday, 20 February 2014

Paul Semugoma - Stay of Deportation

Campaigner, Paul Semugoma

South Africa is a funny ol' country. It's had its fair share of homo-hate horror stories, such as the tragic murder of 15-year-old Raymond Buys at a gay 'rehabilitation' centre. Then it promoted one of its lead homophobes, Jon Qwelane, to Ambassador for Uganda.

Now: South Africa drops deportation case against Ugandan gay rights campaigner - Government officials tried to force Paul Semugoma on to flight to Uganda, say activists, despite court order allowing him to stay

A Ugandan gay rights activist has thwarted an attempt by the South African government to deport him amid fears he would be at risk of imprisonment or death if sent home. 
Officials dropped their case on Thursday against Paul Semugoma, a critic of Uganda's anti-homosexuality bill. But South African activists said it raised questions about their government's treatment of foreign nationals and silence about homophobia on the continent.

Yeah, just a bit.

Come on South Africa, grow a pair.

Wednesday, 19 February 2014

Lokodo 'We Don't Slaughter Gays' - That's 'Tolerance'



Ugandans would rather “die poor”, than give up a law which will increase punishments for homosexuality, a Government spokesman has said.


Uganda's Minister for Ethics and Integrity, Simon Lokodo, robustly defended the country's anti-LGBT crackdown in an interview released today... 
Speaking with Agence France-Presse, Lokodo compared homosexuality to drug addiction and said that Uganda is a country that "tolerates" gays - because they don't slaughter them.

There are no levels to which this creepy goon won't sink.


Tuesday, 18 February 2014

Devex: One Step Forward, Two Steps Back


This is an excellent article by Kelli Rogers for Devex, exploring the schism between international human rights policy and its practise with regard to LGBTI people in international development:


[T]here’s a fine line — one that LGBTI aid workers and allies will continue to push forward carefully. 

“It’s important to recognize that donors and development has actually ignored LGBT issues for a long time,” Traore said. “How can we repair that?”  
In order to add momentum to the social movement, Schwenke would like to see more LGBTI individuals in senior management roles of major institutions as role models of what can be accomplished and strong voices of what needs to happen next.

Well worth a read.

Monday, 17 February 2014

Solidarity Against Shinners


Your good deed for the day, head over to this Facebook group and give it a like to show your solidarity against Paul Shinners, a UK hate preacher: Boycott Cornerstone over Shinners' hand in Uganda's Anti-Homosexuality Bill

He runs a coffee shop in St. Neots and is the head of a UK charity, which the Charity Commission seems to think is a worthwhile use of publicly donated money.


Paul told the protesters in the Cafe that he had not been to Uganda and he was being confused with somebody else. 

Really, Paul? Is that why your face is on this poster?


Sunday, 16 February 2014

Obama Disappointed



As well as being condemned by rights campaigners and health professionals for agreeing to sign the Bahati Bill, President Museveni has also garnered the disappointment of US President Obama:


The new law “will complicate our valued relationship with Uganda,” Obama said. 
He did not threaten any reprisals against Uganda, though some have urged him to do so. “It’s complicated” isn’t an adequate response, one activist remarked.

Yup, but then Obama has been incredibly quiet on this issue from the off, referring to it as simply 'odiouse' whilst sitting down to breakfast with lead US gay-hate group The Family.

Let's see whether Obama can manage to be a little less disappointing on this issue.

Saturday, 15 February 2014

Did Museveni Veto the Bill?


In light of yesterday's news that President Museveni is going to sign the Anti-Gay Bill, UNAIDS Executive Director Michel SidibĂ© says Uganda’s anti-homosexuality bill has ‘serious human rights implications’.

“I strongly urge the Ugandan authorities to reject the bill and ensure the human rights and dignity of all people in Uganda,” said Michel SidibĂ©, Executive Director of the Joint UN Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS)... 
The bill also has public health implications, UNAIDS, said citing studies which show that when gay people face discrimination including abuse, incarceration and prosecution, they are less likely to seek HIV testing, prevention and treatment services. 
In 2012, there were 1.5 million people living with HIV in Uganda and 140,000 new HIV infections, UNAIDS reported. 
Globally, gay men are around 13 times more likely to become infected with HIV than the general population, emphasizing the urgent need to ensure safe access to HIV prevention and treatment services for all people everywhere.

We've highlighted in the past that the Bahati Bill denies HIV/AIDS care to LGBTI people, and a supporting statement was issued by UHSPA in December.

Meanwhile, a very interesting article by Kapya Kaoma questions the earlier report that Museveni was planning to veto the bill.


The answer, apparently, is no:

Museveni did not say that he won’t sign the bill into law. Rather, he promised to take the issue to his party’s caucus, which met on January 24. At the meeting, the caucus wanted Museveni to sign the bill, but, according to the Daily Monitor, Museveni pushed back by demanding “scientific evidence” to establish whether or not gays are abnormal... 
Like others concerned about human rights for all people, I read Museveni’s letter with interest. But after reading it, I realized that Museveni is hedging, clearly playing to both sides. As such, people can interpret the letter according to their own views—as we are now clearly seeing.

Watch this space for further updates...


Friday, 14 February 2014

Museveni to Sign Bill




Tweet just in from @wamala_dennis under the hashtag #AHBUganda:

The president bows to local pressure and agrees to sign the bill.

Followed by a flurry of articles, none of which look good.


Museveni said that he would sign the bill if he was offered scientific proof that homosexuality is not genetic... a spokesperson for the government of Uganda, confirmed Friday that Museveni will sign the bill after “medical experts presented a report that homosexuality is not genetic but a social behavior” recently.

More:



This is despite valiant efforts by Ugandan MP Fox Odoi to prevent the bill passing: 


Fox Odoi, a member of parliament for West Budama North, has written to President Yoweri Museveni urging him to reject the bill.  
In his letter sent yesterday (13 February) and leaked to local media, Odoi has said he has consulted with legal experts and they believe the legislation is unconstitutional. 
The unnamed law firm argues by regulating the behavior of gay and lesbian Ugandans while not regulating behavior of heterosexuals, it will violate article 21 of the constitution. 
Article 21 ‘guarantees’ equality and freedom of discrimination.

And we will not stop reporting until that equality is achieved.

UK Calls for Bill Amendment



Sexual Minorities Uganda have suggested the following amendments to the bill – which those who have signed the letter support. 

They include: 

  • To make sexual offences laws gender neutral
  • To ensure a system of mandated reporting of child abuse
  • To commit the government to addressing risk factors associated with child sexual exploitation
  • To prevent discriminatory access to healthcare in line with Uganda’s own HIV Prevention and Control Bill 2010

As cynics, we feel it's less about promoting human rights, and more about the fear: Britain 'must act' over Uganda's anti-gay bill or risk watching an exodus

After all, if you can make Uganda 'safe' for gay people, it saves all the hassle of having to deport them or kill them yourself.

Wednesday, 12 February 2014

Facebook Haters

Two key online hatemongers we'd like to bring to your attention:



IF I FOUND ANY OF YOU GAYS.I WOULD RATHER BURN YOU ALIVE AND SUFFER MURDER CHARGES THAN LIVING ON THE SAME EARTH WITH YOU.YOU ARE LESS THAN THE WORTH OF ANIMALS

These words were posted on the SMUG forum by a delightful man named Babughirana Augustine Snr. You can find his Facebook profile here, where it also says that he is a Sales Executive for the Insurance Company of East Africa.

Please:

  1. Report his post to Facebook
  2. Report his behaviour to the Insurance Company of East Africa using this contact form
[UPDATE: Facebook have removed Babughirana's post.]





CAN'T HOMOS UNDERSTAND THAT WE ARE TRYING TO MAKE THEM HUMAN. ACCEPT THAT HOMOSEXUALITY IS A MENTAL DISORDER AND ITS THE DEVIL USING YOU. REPENT NOW

Words from the keyboard of Isabirye Richard. It has also been said in forums that:

This man has been outing LGBT Ugandans. He has disseminated a graphic with the information of an LGBT activist with ties to Uganda.

You can find his Facebook profile here, please report it to Facebook.

[UPDATE March 2014: This page has been removed, but it wasn't easy.]

Monday, 10 February 2014

Global Day of Action

Uganda
New York
South Africa

Today saw a global day of protest around the world as Uganda awaits president's decision on whether anti-gay bill will become law.

You can see pictures and comments from lots of participants on the Facebook page Global Day of Action Against the Anti Homosexuality Bill in Uganda.

On 20th December 2013, The Lesbian and Gay Bisexual Transgender Community in Uganda woke up to the grim news that the Anti Homosexuality bill, which had been shelved at the end of 2012 had been passed by Parliament. The bill was passed without Quorum and without Prior mandatory inclusion on the Parliament Order Paper. The bill, if passed into law will be a disaster to the Human Rights of LGBT people, a disaster to public health and the fight against HIV/AIDS. 
Recent reports in the national and International Media have indicated that the President ‘will not sign’ the bill and hence it is generally believed that the bill is no longer a threat. 

We would like to reiterate that this bill is still a huge threat and a treasure to the majority of Ugandans. 
It is also worth to note that the power of ascension of a bill doesn’t lay primarily with the President of Uganda. The Parliament of Uganda can also pass the bill into law!
The Constitution provides that the president shall within 30 days after a bill is presented to him/her either:-

  • Assent to the bill 
  • Return the bill to parliament with a request that the bill or a particular provision of it be reconsidered by parliament; or
  • Notify the speaker in writing about the decision
  • The bill may be reconsidered and then presented for the president’s approval. However it may become law without the president’s assent if he/she returns it to parliament two times. It should have the support of at least two-thirds of all MPs.



Why the Day of Action?
If we remain silent, we shall suffer at the hands of Ugandan leaders that have no respect for Human Rights! Silence will not protect us!! We need to speak out against Injustice; We need to speak out FOR Human Rights! We need to speak out against the Anti Homosexuality Bill. We need you to Let Uganda know, through this Day of Action, that the world is watching. We Must demand Justice and respect for Human Rights for all Ugandans. 
Reach out to your family, your co-worker, your friend, your partner; Make sure they join you in speaking out for Human Rights.  
Thanks You for the Solidarity! 
Civil Society Coalition on Human Rights and Constitutional Law

There is also a protest outside Paul Shinner's cafe in the town of St. Neots, UK, planned for 15th February. There's a protest page here.

Solidarity!

Thursday, 6 February 2014

Lokodo Compiles Terror Lists

Simon Lokodo

Some disturbing news that Uganda's laughingly titled Ethicks and Integrity Minister is once again compiling lists of people suspected of being homosexual, ahead of a ruling on whether to assent the anti-gay law.


Those with a long memory will remember the “Homo Terror” lists of some years ago which appeared in a couple of Ugandan tabloids, causing consternation all over the world. 
Well, the lists are back, but this time in the hands of a few, very determined, anti-gay campaigners who have co-opted the police to hunt down the gays in Uganda... 
Even as the anti-gay bill is being ping-ponged around Uganda’s corridors of power, President Museveni’s own cabinet minister is already at work on his own personal crusade, in connivance with a pliable police. 
It seems safe to say that Museveni’s minister of Ethics and Integrity has already started executing his own, independent, response to his boss’ caustic rejection of the bill Parliament passed in late December 2013.

Wonder how long before terror lists turn into death lists?