Ugandan Activists to U.S. : Thanks For Heeding Our Advice

Published: June 20, 2014

LGBTI rights activists in Uganda cheered the United States for following  their advice on how to avoid harming the Ugandan people while penalizing anti-gay Ugandan officials for the country’s harsh new anti-gay law.

“In line with our guidelines. Very impressive. Thanks for the support,”  tweeted Ugandan LGBTI activist Jacqueline Kasha Nabagesera after the U.S. announced its plans yesterday.

“Gay bashing will get all bashed. America hits back,” the LGBTI rights group Spectrum Uganda wrote on its Facebook page.

“For me it’s not only about Uganda, it’s about other countries where politicians think they can use discrimination and homophobia for political purposes and get away with it,” Frank Mugisha, executive director of Sexual Minorities Uganda (SMUG), told BuzzFeed.

The new U.S. actions that Ugandan activists praised included:

  • Restricting entry to the United States by unnamed “specific Ugandan individuals involved in serious violations or abuses of human rights, including those determined to have committed such violations or abuses against LGBT individuals.”
  • Halting a $2.4 million program for Ugandan police.
  • Shifting some U.S. aid for central Ugandan Ministry of Health operations to non-governmental health service providers.
  • Moving a planned public health institute from Uganda to South Africa.
  • Cancelling a military aviation exercise.

Those in addition to U.S. actions announced in March, including:

  • A $6.4 million cut in funding to the Inter-Religious Council of Uganda, which is a prime support of the Anti-Homosexuality Act.
  • Converting $3 million in funding for Ugandan tourism and biodiversity protection into funding for non-governmental organizations supporting biodiversity in Uganda.
  • Moving planned military-related meetings to locations outside Uganda.

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