Health4Men, a project of the Anova Health Institute, expresses grave concern and foreboding regarding developments in Uganda pertaining to the ongoing persecution of gay people, and the criminalisation of homosexuality in that country.
The Ugandan Anti-Homosexuality Bill appropriately referred to as the Kill the Gays Bill in the media, is due for a second reading in Uganda’s parliament within days. This is happening within the context of the Speaker of that parliament, Rebecca Kadaga, stating that the bill will definitely be passed and describing it as a “Christmas gift” to Ugandans. It is ironic that the bill which allows for the death penalty on the grounds of sexual orientation was initially submitted by a fundamentalist Christian MP who was reportedly influenced by the irrational anti-gay views for a group of American Christian extremists.
We assert that the bill is blatantly genocidal in that it is aimed at the deliberate and systematic destruction of a minority group on the basis of their sexual identity.
We therefore call on the Government of South Africa to undertake the following:
• Denounce the above developments in Uganda and call for a rational human-rights approach in that country regarding people with alternate sexual identities;
• Instruct the South African Department of Home Affairs to facilitate the efficient and safe passage of gay-identifying refugees from Uganda into South Africa.
The bill can be viewed at http://nationalpress.typepad.com/files/bill-no-18-anti-homosexuality-bill-2009.pdf
The Anova Health Institute is committed to improving the quality of public health services, with a special focus on HIV. Anova is a leading partner in capacity building and the provision of technical support to the South African Department of Health, with a reputation for innovative responses and ground-breaking research in HIV. Anova is primarily funded by the US President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).
Health4Men, a project of the Anova Health Institute, provides free sexual healthcare to men who have sex with men (MSM), irrespective of their sexual orientation. The organisation also advocates for access to competent health services for such men throughout South Africa, and provides related training to doctors and nurses. The project currently has six clinics dedicated to MSM, offering comprehensive free healthcare services including antiretroviral treatment (ART).
Glenn de Swardt
Programme Manager: Health4Men
Mobile +27 71 671 5875