While We Watch Sochi, They Hunt Ugandan Gays

StopAntiGayBill

Ugandan gays and lesbians urgently need:

  1. Experts who will immediately write to the President, via Andrew Waiswa of GEHO Uganda, with credible peer-reviewed research demonstrating that gays are indeed “Born This Way”  Click here to email Andrew.
  2. Money: to rent safe houses, and to get those in immediate danger out of the country. PLEASE DONATE whatever you can spare. 
  3. Travel: help with travel to overseas countries where they will be safe. PLEASE DONATE whatever you can spare. 

An all-out attack is in progress

While the world is focussed on Sochi on the horror of the situation for Russian gays and lesbians, Uganda is going all-out in it’s attack on its LGBTI citizens. The Facebook pages of GEHO Uganda founder Andrew Waiswa and SMUG – Sexual Minorities Uganda – document the firestorm.

The ‘Kill Gays Bill has been passed by parliament in controversial circumstances, but President Museveni has refused to sign it in the absence of credible scientific evidence that homosexuality is a learned behaviour. If the proponents of the bill produce convincing evidence that gays are NOT ‘born this way’, he will sign.In response local politicians have commissioned a report to be presented to his party caucus  during its February 6-16 retreat in Kyankwanzi. However, the team of ‘scientists’ does not lead one to have much confidence in the outcome.

“The team of scientists established to carry-out research is guided by genetic experts from the region. It is composed of [party] lawmakers with a medical background. These include; Kinkiizi East MP Dr Chris Baryomunsi, Dr Bitekyerezo (Mbarara municipality), Dr Kenneth Omona (Kaberamaido) and Dr Sam Lyomoki (Workers).” [Observer Uganda]

Hardly a crack team of internationally recognised experts in the field! To try to counter this, GEHO founder is asking international experts to send him proper accredited research findings.

“Writers, Researchers, Scientists, Psychiatrists, Clinicians, and Activists PLEASE write to the President of Uganda – Museveni NOW and tell him that homosexuality is not an abnormality. You can email it to me and I will pass it onto the President’s office, I have a way to do it.” Click here to email Andrew.

Meanwhile, lists of gays to be targeted are being waved around by politicians and the tabloid press. Credible reports say

“Arbitrary arrests are being planned whether President Yoweri Museveni signs the anti-gay bill or not. The arrests will be done stealthily and then publicity will be shone on them once the victims are apprehended.”

 

“Currently, the ‘investigators’ are operating around the Ntinda/Bukoto area, (Kampala suburbs) where they are casing out residences and drinking joints. They are being assisted by Kira Road Police in their furtive “inquiries.” “

The LGBTI community is crazed with fear, and seeking ways to go into hiding, or, preferably, flee abroad. But to do this, they need money they do not have. If you can spare a few dollars, click here to donate.

In Their Own Words

The Facebook page of Andrew Waiswa over the last week tells the story:

Feb 1. Desperately we have to accept the fact that the LGBTq Ugandan cause (where innocent LGBTq individuals are being treated like animals – in the most gruesome way one can even imagine) will only get more attention when the Russian cause has been won. Despite the pleas and cries, there is totally limited response. I have come to agree and respect everybody’s reason for not standing up. Sometimes we have just to do it on our own. I could like to thank everybody who has helped and stood with us all through.

Feb 2 URGENT!!!!! So far we have managed to get 6 most at risk LGBTq out of Uganda. 6 safe 67 to go!!!! Some cases can’t wait!! We have another urgent group of 8 we have to get out of Uganda now or we risk their lives. Am begging you for financial and logistical support to make this happen. Its urgent, it can’t be later.

Feb 3 So they want to kill me for being me and trying to help fellow LGBTq brothers and sisters??? Now that’s madness!! I have survived many attempts and I know some of us might loose our lives in this battle, but giving up the fight is not an option. Friends if I die or if anything happens, just know Richard Isabirye and his gang/mob are responsible in one way or another. Its not the first time he has made attempts on my life.. . . The security of one of the houses has been compromised, time to run again.

Feb 3. A miracle should happen now!!!!!!!! It can’t be any later

Feb 4. We are born this way!!! We are gay! We are hear … we can’t hide anymore, we have nowhere to run…yes we are Ugandan Kuchus!!!! Even after last night’s ordeal, where we missed a bloodshed by just a minute, some of our clients are still willing to proudly display the Rainbow, though there is a lot of fear in their eyes, some can force a smile, at least they are safe for now. 

Andrew Waiswa is known to and vouched for by the members of InterPride, the international association of pride marches around the world. PLEASE DONATE whatever you can spare. 

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About the author

Veteran gay writer and speaker, Doug was one of the founders of the UKs pioneering GLBTI newspaper Gay News (1972) , and of the second, Gay Week, and is a former Features Editor of Him International. He presented news and current affairs on JOY 94.9 FM Melbourne for more than ten years. And now he's been nominated for LGBTI Journalist of the Year 2017, which is great news, as he hasn't won any of these things for years! If you want to nominate him too - the more the merrier - you can do it here http://www.australianlgbtiawards.com.au/public-nominations.html "Doug is revered, feared and reviled in equal quantities, at times dividing people with his journalistic wrath. Yet there is no doubt this grandpa-esque bear keeps everyone abreast of anything and everything LGBT across the globe." (Daniel Witthaus, "Beyond Priscilla", Clouds of Magellan, Melbourne, 2014)