Another Lesbian Denied Asylum Under Threat of Immediate Removal back to Uganda

UPDATED:  July 31, 2014.

Harriet Nakigudde has just won her appeal. She has won asylum in the United Kingdom after a hard fought battle by activists and amazing attorneys and a compassionate and experienced barrister who came to her aid. This highlights the cruelty of the UK system – that puts already traumatized people through hell before the truth is reached and justice is metered out.

By Staff, June, 2014.

Harriet Nakigudde

Harriet Nakigudde is a 30 year old lesbian, from Uganda, who fled harassment, discrimination and persecution by her own family as well as the general public, including the government. She sought protection in the UK on the basis of fearing for her life because of her sexuality, as a lesbian. And true to form, the United Kingdom once again is rejecting a lesbian, based on their belief that she is not a lesbian. Thus keeps happening. And we are remnided of the actual death that did occur when the UK Home Office successfully deported lesbian Jackie Nanyonjo.

Ms. Nakigudde is currently under immediate threat of removal back to Uganda and at risk of imprisonment and torture upon arrival. She has received removal directions for Tuesday the June10, 2014, even though she has a pending Judicial review application in the High Court.

The spokesperson, Edwin Sesange, for Out & Proud Diamond, notes:

“This is a miscarriage of justice for the Home Office to predict the outcomes of the courts of law in the UK. It is very clear that no action should have been taken by the Home office to issue any removal direction while a person has applied for her case to review by the courts.”

When the Government tried to remove her on a previous occasion, May 17, this year, Harriet, so severely traumatized,  collapsed while boarding the plan.  This is indeicative of the extreme nature of her terror in going back to uganda, especially now that the punitive measure for LGBT people have increased so dramatically by virtue of the new Anti-homosexuality Acct, made law March 10, 2014. She could face 14 years to life in prison for being a lesbian.


The Ridiculous Reasoning of the UK Home Office:

The Home office denied her asylum on the basis that she did not get into a relationship whilst in the UK for the period of 5 years she has been here. Harriet was asked what she used to do sexually with her partner in private, even though she explained to them briefly, she feared and was humiliated at the encroachment on her privacy.  The Home office also used this against her.  These are the kind of questioning  the Home Secretary promised to review.

Sesange noted, even though Harriet did reveal the names of two previous partners to the Home Office, they did not believe her, because those people are hard to track down or expose:

“Harriet has kept her private life secret and she is not used to talking about it to strangers, even though it is a requirement for the Home office to encroach on people private, we strongly encourage them to stop it.”

Harriet’s case has been placed in the fast track system without her being given a chance to obtain decent legal representation and gather evidence. If sent back to Uganda she runs the risk of being arrested at the airport, detained and imprisoned for years.

Out & Proud Diamond is asking that an attorney step forward to take the case urgently and that  the Home Secretary cancel Harriet’s removal direction, giving the courts a chance to review her case. Harriet should also be released from Yarlswood detention where she has been since March 2014. She is in a severe state of trauma and needs to be with members of her community.

On February 24, 2014 the Ugandan president Museveni signed the controversial Anti-Homosexuality Bill which includes life sentences for so-called ‘aggravated homosexuality’. Within the following days the newspaper Red Pepper published a list with the full names and photographs of 200 alleged homosexuals. David Kato, a prominant LGBTI activist, was killed a few days after a similar list was published in 2011. The bill, the lists and the murder of David Kato are illustrative for the extremely violent climate and hatred towards LGBTIs in Uganda.

It is noted by OUT & Proud  that since President Museveni was invited to the UK last month the UK govt has seemed to step up its deportation of LGBT asylum seekers back to Uganda.

Updated :LGBT human rights defenders and activists have acknowledged knowing Harriet. One group, at great risk to its own security, is going to write a letter in support of Harriet’s case, stating that she is known to be a lesbian in their community and that they were aware that she left Uganda when the opportunity presented, to escape persecution by her own family.



UPDATED:  6/9/2014

Excellent news.  A solicitor was found for Harriet, various activists came forward with helpful reports, new papers were filed and Harriet’s removal flight back to Uganda was cancelled. She is still in detention at Yarwood and will not given a new opportunity to present her case for review.  We will keep you posted.  Well dont to all involved and to all who signed and will continue to sign the Petition. Keep signing so we can continue to show solidarity.


Murder of Ugandan lesbian deportee at the hands of UK authorities, Reliance Security and Qatar Airlines

U.K. Activists demand justice By Melanie Nathan, March 14, 2013. Yesterday we reported the story of the death of Jackie Nanyonjo.  Now U.K. activists are calling it murder – read  The Movement for Justice report below.  The question is who is responsible. Evidence is emerging that Jackie was not well while incarcerated by U.K. authorities […]

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Lesbian dies after being deported by United Kingdom back to Uganda

By Melanie Nathan, March 12, 2013. Activists in the United Kingdom are blaming the United Kingdom Border Agency for deporting an asylum seeker who has now according to Pink News, died in Uganda, “after she claimed she was at risk of homophobic persecution,” if she returned. When it comes to LGBT Asylum the UK is […]

7 Comments Continue Reading →

4 thoughts on “Another Lesbian Denied Asylum Under Threat of Immediate Removal back to Uganda

  1. Reblogged this on It Is What It Is and commented:
    For gosh’s sake!! Can’t send this lady back!! No!!

  2. I think it’s time we call on Secretary Theresa May to resign. She can’t fix this crap and people are still at risk of death on her watch. No more Jackies, Theresa. Get out!

  3. Reblogged this on JerBear's Queer World News, Views & More From The City Different – Santa Fe, NM and commented:
    This is infuriating!

  4. Pingback: Uganda lesbian wins asylum in UK after long battle | Denis Nzioka

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