The bill was presented to Parliament by Hon Asuman Basalirwa of the opposition JEEMA party and has been referred to the Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Committee following its first reading.
During the tabling of the bill, Hon Among invited members of the public, including members of the LGBT community, to express their opinions on the bill to ensure that everyone is heard.
“We are inviting everyone including homos; allow them to come… MPs, religious leaders, all of them. We don’t want a scenario of people saying we were not heard,” she said.
The proposed legislation, which was gazetted on March 3rd, 2023, outlines penalties for acts of homosexuality, aggravated homosexuality, attempted homosexuality, aiding and abetting, and conspiracy to commit such acts.
The bill also includes provisions for protecting and compensating victims of homosexuality and penalties for disclosing the identities of victims without their consent.
Hon Basalirwa has proposed that all members of parliament make video statements to the public stating whether or not they support the bill.
While expressing concern about international pressure regarding the proposed law, Government Chief Whip Hon Hamson Obua reassured the public that neither the government nor parliament was under any form of pressure.
“I want to state that the leadership of the government of Uganda under President Yoweri Museveni is not under any pressure. I want to state also, that even the leadership of parliament under Speaker Anita Among who is here in person, is not under any pressure,” he said.
“The laws we make here are constitutional and we make them for the peace, stability and good governance of Uganda.”
Hon Among also stated that the voting on the bill would be done by tallying each member of the house to avoid any technicalities.
Hon Among is determined to prevent a repeat of the 2014 Anti-Homosexuality Act, which was struck down by the Constitutional Court because it was passed without a quorum.