Uganda: MPs to alter parliamentary regulations to allow vote on new anti-gay law
Ugandan MPs attempting to re-implement the country’s anti-gay law are trying to alter parliamentary regulations.
Last Friday, the country’s Constitutional Court struck down the Uganda Anti-Homosexuality Act, finding that the speaker of Parliament acted illegally by moving ahead with a vote on the law despite at least three lawmakers objecting to a lack of quorum.
A group of Ugandan MPs are currently gathering signatures in order to force a vote on putting the law back in place urgently, despite regulations preventing them from doing so.
So far at least 165 MPs have signed the petition, and want the parliament’s procedures amended to allow the bill to pass at a short notice.
MP Latif Ssebagala, who is leading the calls to have the law tabled, said they have set up a committee, aiming to secure a waiver that will allow the time they have to wait before passing the law to be reduced from 45 days to just three.
If they are successful, it is expected that the law could be finally passed when parliament returns from recess later this month.
MP David Bahati, who tabled the original bill, previously said that rules could be flouted in an emergency.
He said: “We can suspend any of the rules if we think it is important.
“Whether it’s tomorrow or a week or a month, we will take whatever time is required to make sure that the future of our children is protected, the family is protected, and the sovereignty nation of the protected.
“The issues of technicalities is not a big deal to anybody. But the big deal… is that homosexuality is not a human right here in Uganda.”
Homosexuality is still illegal in Uganda, despite the striking down of the law