A Ugandan LGBTI rights activist who is close to the nation’s troubled fight against HIV/Aids was cheered by yesterday’s parliamentary report recommending a change for the Uganda Aids Commission — a change that he expects will be adopted through an amendment to the law that established that agency. Because of the sensitivity of the political situation, he remains anonymous here. He writes:
I am very happy that Parliament has put the country first by preparing to move the homophobic and annoying Uganda Aids Commission (UAC) under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Health.
UAC has been the headquarters of gay hatred in Uganda, especially under the reign of Dr. Kihumuro Apuuli, who led the UAC from 1999 to 2014.
UAC has been under the President’s Office, where anti-gay forces especially American Pastor Scott Lively and Stephen Langa, founder of the Family Life Network Uganda, have been abusing its proximity to the president.
Under Apuuli, the UAC oversaw a policy of deliberately allowing the disease burden of LGBTI people and sex workers to increase, claiming that they deserved to die because they were morally bankrupt. UAC has been a hub of gay hatred.
Now that the UAC is moving to the Ministry of Health, the government of Uganda can again fulfill its United Nations-endorsed obligation to protect its people and help them to achieve the highest attainable level of health. It also means America’s conservative anti-gay religious cult known as The Family can no longer victimise us, because the government is now answerable.
As part of the change, Uganda’s Global Fund policy panel also will now be answerable to the Ministry of Health. In addition, disgusting power struggles between UAC and the Ministry of Health will be averted.
To celebrate this, a small dinner will be thrown on Monday next week. People who have been obstructing the fight against HIV/Aids are not invited.
Related information about:
Stephen Langa (from Political Research Associates) — In March 2012, the New York Times reported that Langa had been indicted as one of four Ugandan co-conspirators in a U.S. federal lawsuit brought by Sexual Minorities Uganda, a human-rights advocacy group, against Massachusetts-based pastor Scott Lively.
See also this blog’s March 2014 article “Ugandan anti-gay strategy: The war has barely begun.”
Kihumuro Apuuli (from this blog in the December 2015 article “Will anti-gay Ugandan derail Global Fund efforts?”) — Apuuli, the former director general of the Uganda Aids Commission (UAC), reportedly will be named to the Global Fund board in Geneva. He is to represent Eastern and Southern Africa effective this year. The Global Fund, one of the primary supporters of the fight against HIV/Aids worldwide, has been working in recent years to dismantle the barriers that exclude LGBTI people from receiving adequate health care. That effort could be derailed if an opponent of barrier-free health care becomes influential on the Global Fund board.
The Family (from National Public Radio and Harpers) — A “secretive fellowship of powerful American Christian politicians” that has “poured millions into [conservative and anti-gay] ‘leadership development’ ” in Uganda.
- Will anti-gay Ugandan derail Global Fund efforts? (December 2015, 76crimes.com)
- Fighting AIDS with rural LGBTI, sex workers in Uganda (August 2015, 76crimes.com)
- Scott Lively, US anti-gay evangelist to stand trial (December 2014, 76crimes.com)
- Uganda: U.S. picks AIDS contractor, ousts anti-gay group (July 2014, 76crimes.com)
- Anti-gay fervor in Uganda hurts region’s AIDS projects (May 2014, 76crimes.com)
- After 14 years, the Aids ‘commissioner’ retires (March 2014, The Observer)
- Ugandan anti-gay strategy: The war has barely begun (March 2014, 76crimes.com)