A homophobic politician in Uganda has branded LGBT people who have sent him hate emails ‘sick’ and accused them of using ‘foul language.’

James Nsaba Buturo, the minister of Ethics and Integrity, told the Daily Monitor that he gets at least twenty threatening emails a day, mostly from people in the US and UK.

Gay sex is punishable in Uganda by life imprisonment, under laws originally introduced by the British colonial administration in the nineteenth century.

Mr Butoro has been a leading opponent of gay rights and last year promised to round up and imprison rights activists.

There have been a series of government-backed attacks on the Ugandan gay community in the last two years, including an illegal police raid on the home of the lesbian leader of Uganda’s LGBT movement, Victor Juliet Mukasa, in July 2005.

The minister told the Daily Monitor:

“The language those people use while writing messages to me is horrible. I can’t read them out because it will be a shame for me.

“With such words and language used, I have noticed that those people are sick. They need help.

“The Government does not plan to vilify and criminalise homosexuals. It will support measures to counsel and help them understand that their state is not normal or natural but a serious social and psychological aberration in human behaviour.”

Juliet Victor Mukasa, said she was not aware of any threats to the minister:

“As far as Uganda is concerned, we are not behind and aware of any threats addressed to the minister.

“Despite fighting us, we shall not be intimidated. We will fight for our rights and we will win,” she told Xinhua news agency.