Deputy Speaker calls for inquiry into Kasese Municipality by-law

The internal affairs and local government ministers have been directed to investigate a by-law passed by the Kasese Municipal Council, which seeks to recognise homosexuals and transgender people as minorities.

While issuing the directive during the plenary sitting on Wednesday, 25 January 2023, the Deputy Speaker, Thomas Tayebwa, tasked the ministers to present their findings to the House.

“I have received information that the council was being facilitated by an NGO called Human Rights Promotion Awareness Forum coordinated by a one Bob Kyamanya,” Tayebwa said.

He said that such NGOs are using local governments to front negative agendas.

“There is no local government that can pass a by-law that contravenes national laws. I want the Minister for Local Government to train these people because it is embarrassing,” Tayebwa added.

He urged Members of Parliament to stand firm in the fight against the vice of same sex relationships that are being propagated by negative elements in the society.

“Colleagues, this is not a fight for the faint hearted. They will target you and try to tarnish your name and threaten you that you will not get a visa. The best visa you have is being a Ugandan,” said the Deputy Speaker.

Hon. Sarah Opendi (NRM, Tororo District Woman MP) also called for investigations into Key Populations Consortium Uganda Limited, another NGO for promoting same sex relationships in the country.

“The Ministry of Health has identified key populations that include the boda boda riders and fisher folk. These NGOs are being used to reach the grassroots to promote health but in the guise of promoting something else,” Opendi said.

Hon. Moses Okot (FDC, Kioga County) said that the Anti-Homosexuality Bill that was shelved over inadequate quorum, should be returned to the House.

“Why is it that this Parliament is not moving ahead to create the intended forum so that we bring the bill back to the House for enactment?” Okot asked.

Bukonjo County West MP, Hon. Atkins Katusabe, said they will go to the communities and ensure adequate sensitisation on the matter.

“This by-law is not a position of the people of Kasese. Kasese is a highly religious district and we are law abiding citizens. There is only one constitution by which we abide,” said Katusabe.

The State Minister for Local Government, Hon. Victoria Rusoke, urged MPs to regularly attend local council meetings so as to offer guidance in their legislation and leadership.

“If Members of Parliament were in this council, things would not have been what they are now. They would advise, caution, condemn and refuse the act of passing that illegal by-law,” she noted.

She also observed that regulation of NGOs in the country is limited thus enabling them to hide their activities at the grassroots.

“We need active participation of the Police when they are tipped off. Corruption is one of the things encouraging homosexuality because people get reports and keep quiet. We should debate as Parliament to come up with something very reprimanding to deter this habit,” Rusoke said.