Gay Scouts May Face Death Penalty in Uganda – Execution of Gays Proposed by Ugandan Scout Leader – By Peter Tatchell
Bahati is decorated with a scouts scarf – Photograph by Geoffrey Sseruyange
CORRECTION re “Execute gay scouts” news release
London – 17 February 2010
On 16 February, I issued a news release about the Anti-Homosexuality Bill in Uganda and the Bill’s sponsorship by David Bahati MP, who is also Chairman of the Scout Board of Uganda.
I should have made it clear that Mr Bahati was not explicitly calling for the execution of gay scouts and scout leaders. His Bill proposes the execution of gay serial offenders, which could, of course, include gay scout members. But his Bill does not target gay scouts in particular and he has not specifically called for the execution of scouts who are gay. The threat to gay scouts in Uganda is implicit, not explicit.
Apologies for my lack of clarity. Below is a revised, corrected version of the news release, together with some new information about the Uganda Bill.
Peter Tatchell – London, UK
Gay scouts may face death penalty in Uganda
Execution of gays proposed by Ugandan scout leader
World scout movement urged to expel Uganda
Call for UK Scout Association to sever links with Uganda scout movement
London, UK – 17 February 2010
“A leader of the scout movement in Uganda is demanding the execution of anyone who is convicted of repeated homosexual acts or related offences. This could include the execution of gay scouts and scout leaders,” reports human rights campaigner, Peter Tatchell of OutRage!.
“Chairman of the Scout Board of Uganda, David Bahati, is proposing that all serial homosexual offenders should be sentenced to death. This could include young people, such as scouts.
“Mr Bahati is a Ugandan MP. His Anti-Homosexuality Bill is currently before the Ugandan Parliament. It stipulates the death penalty for serial offenders who have previous convictions for same-sex relations or for related non-sexual offences such as aiding and abetting homosexuality, funding gay advocacy groups, having a same-sex marriage or promoting homosexuality. Some of these related offences could also be committed by heterosexual Ugandans. They would also be liable to a death sentence for repeat offences.
“In other words, a person does not have to be gay or to have gay sex in order to be sentenced to death under the Anti-Homosexuality Bill. Serial offending and previous convictions for the non-sexual offences are sufficient grounds for execution.
“The Bill also specifies life imprisonment for minor same-sex acts, such as kissing, touching or caressing with homosexual intent.
“Although Mr Bahati and his Anti-Homosexuality Bill do not explicitly mention or target the scout movement, the draconian clauses and punishments threaten all lesbian, gay and bisexual Ugandans, including members of his own scouting movement.