- Ugandan clerics have called on government to resist the international pressure demanding the country to scrape the Anti-Homosexuality Bill currently being debated in Parliament.
The Inter-religious Council of Uganda (IRC) statement issued by the clerics have recommended that the government should think of cutting diplomatic ties with countries that are bent on forcing homosexuality on Ugandans.
The Bill proposes that a person convicted of homosexual in Uganda is liable to life imprisonment.
The strong stance of the clerics comes just a week after the Swedish government threatened to cut aid to Uganda if it continues to debate the proposed anti-gay law in the country.
Pressure has been mounting from donor countries including, Canada, UK and Sweden to press Uganda to discard the proposed law intended to severely punish homosexuals.
The Secretary General of IRC, Mr Joshua Kitakule told a local newspaper, the Daily Monitor, that development partners should not interfere in the process of legislation in Uganda. “Those countries should respect our spiritual values,” he said.
In October, the Ugandan Clergy appealed to the government to scrape the death penalty in the Anti-homosexuality Bill 2009 and rather opt life imprisonment.
The Clergy from dominant religious groups in the country said killing homosexuals does not serve the purpose of signaling the wrong doing, but the government should rather leave them to rot in jail.
Once the bill is passed into law, anyone found practicing homosexuality will face 14 years in prison whereas those found guilty of operating brothels where homosexuals meet will also be liable to 14 years imprisonment.
The offenders would face death for having sex with a minor or a disabled person, or for infecting their partners with HIV. It would also punish attempted homosexuality as well as the failure of a third party to report homosexual relationships.
Pressure has been mounting from outside the continent for the past two years to introduce the same rights for homosexuals as are on the statute books of most Western countries. There are more than 500,000 homosexuals in Uganda in a country of 30 million.
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