Lawsuit filed challenging Uganda’s Anti-Homosexuality Act

“no personal opinion, no religious belief, no matter how deeply held or widely shared can ever justify depriving another human being of his or her basic rights…”

By Cathy Kristofferson, March 11, 2014

BichzmoIgAAJ9vmToday advocates from the Civil Society Coalition on Human Rights and Constitutional Law (CSCHRSL) filed a constitutional challenge to Uganda’s Anti-Homosexuality Act (AHA).  The team that filed the petition consists of seven advocates from five law firms, who have consulted with at least 20 lawyers worldwide.

The petitioners maintain that the recently enacted Anti-Homosexuality Act violates the LGBT community’s right to privacy, freedoms of expression, assembly and association which are all guaranteed in the Ugandan Constitution.

AHAfiled

The lead petitioners in this case include Prof. Joe Oloka-Onyango, Hon. Fox Odoi-Oywelowo, Andrew Mwenda, Prof. Morris Latigo, Dr. Paul Ssemugoma, Jacqueline Kasha Nabagesera, Julian Pepe Onziema, Frank Mugisha, as well as the indigenous organisations Human Rights Awareness and Promotion Forum (HRAPF) and the Centre for Health, Human Rights and Development (CEHURD).

Screen Shot 2014-03-11 at 7.35.49 AM

Petition showing court stamp

The petitioners are an impressive group and include a Professor of Law as the leading petitioner, an MP who is among the authors of the minority report, a  journalist/political commentator, a former leader of opposition, an openly gay medical doctor, along with the three LGBTI leaders (Kasha, Pepe and Frank) and the two organisations.

civilsocietyAdditionally today, petitions were filed for a stay against implementation of the AHA, and also to stop the on going media outings by tabloids such as Red Pepper and Hello which have been mercilessly outing actual and perceived members of the LGBT community daily since Museveni’s ascension to the Law on February 24th.

Speaking at the press event following the filing, MP Fox Odoi said:

“I do not fear losing an elections, I fear a society that seeks to discriminate minorities. I cannot have my name there”

frankahafiling

kashaahafiling

We will update with a copy of the petition when it becomes available. Until then we will sit in awe of the brave human rights defenders…

UPDATE: The Press Statement and Petition text:

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14 Comments on “Lawsuit filed challenging Uganda’s Anti-Homosexuality Act”

  1. C. Thomas Boone March 11, 2014 at 8:43 AM #

    Regardless of what one thinks of LGBT people or on the topic, something is so upside down when a lawsuit has to be filed built on fundamental human rights arguments and principles to challenge a national law in a country that seemingly as a matter of course, regardless of which “tribal chief” is in charge, makes a ritualistic mockery of human rights and engages in some of the most brutal and unthinkable genocidal and human trafficking practices — much to the horror of most of “civilized” world who by in large (ICC aside) are incapable of really finding the jujitsu point that will flip the underlying social motivators that perpetuate this cyclical and barbaric disregard for the rights of human beings other than oneself (different somehow). The preponderance of evidence suggests that attempts to aid said victims only enrich rival thug leaders – and that there is an inverse relationship between harsh economic times and an upsurge in human rights abuses. While it is easy to see the homosexuality question as a “unique” or special human rights issue, it is a huge mistake and global LGBT leaders must avoid this pitfall. In truth, this law is yet another egregious example of Uganda’s total disregards for human rights — and ne is reminded of Martin Niemoller’s immortal words, “First they came for the trade unionists …”

  2. Dr. Rex March 11, 2014 at 9:42 AM #

    Reblogged this on It Is What It Is and commented:
    Yes, take it to court!!!

  3. Rogers Malagala March 11, 2014 at 11:08 AM #

    It is abig step forward to adrees the plight of LGBT people in Uganda. Much as they think they r jubilating of the victory to put the last Nail to the LGBT community , This aggressive push will show the World and these corrupt Leaders that Ugandans are free to live in harmony regardless of their sexual orientation !

  4. David Crastillo March 11, 2014 at 11:56 AM #

    Es un atentado contra sus derechos humanos,es una ley inhumana y cruel que debe ser revertida,no es posible que aun existan paises como uganda donde es penalisada la homosexualidad,no es justo y deben de rebocarla por que solo traera mas muertos y pondra a la comunidad lgbt ,mas vulnerable a ataques

  5. Peter Sikowski March 14, 2014 at 6:38 AM #

    Thank goodness that we have these awesome brave people to help fight for those oppressed through no fault of their own and continue being persecuted only because of who they are .
    I’m so grateful to be able to exercise my basic human rights and enjoy the freedoms and peace of mind to be able to be who I am and to love whomever I choose.
    It’s a shame that it has to come to this suit to give people their human rights which were God given and just because the majority of people are not fully educated and have misconceived perceptions of the gay, homosexual community. You can bet that they would be upset if the opposite were true.
    Thank you again for fighting an awesome cause.

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