Current Affairs

Venue slammed by campaigners for allowing anti-gay Ugandan politicians at conference

Joseph McCormick August 27, 2014
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The London venue set to host a Ugandan conference next month has been criticised by human rights campaigners because it features politicians who supported the country’s anti-gay legislation.

Speaker of the Ugandan Parliament, and champion of the country’s anti-gay law, Rebecca Kadaga, will appear at the 4th Ugandan Investment Forum in the Troxy on 13 September 2014.

In an email forwarded to PinkNews from a reader, a spokesman for the Troxy said the event would go ahead, noting that the venue was the first corporate signatory to Tower Hamlets’ “No Place For Hate” campaign.

The spokesman went on to claim that Willy Mutenza, the organiser of the event, has worked to help LGBT Ugandans to settle the UK.

“We welcome you the opportunity to demonstrate on the day and there will be a location at the front of the venue for you to do so,” the spokesman continued.

Speaking to PinkNews, humanr rights campaigner Peter Tatchell criticsed the venue for allowing the conference to go ahead.

He said: “I have seen no evidence that Willy Mutenza supports Ugandan LGBT refugees. Regardless, Kadaga is definitely not acceptable. Troxy would not facilitate a conference hosting racist speakers. Why are they hosting a conference with homophobic speakers? It is double standards.”

The theme of the event is “Uganda is open for business”, and other speakers include the Vice President, various Ministers and peers.

Kadaga pushed forward the country’s now defunct Anti-Homosexuality Act, in its early stages, and initially had promised to pass the bill by the end of 2012.

The Troxy was reported to have axed homophobic Ugandan rapper Bobi Wine from its listings earlier this month after he called for all gay people to be burned.

On 1 August, Uganda’s Constitutional Court overturned the country’s Anti-Homosexuality Act.

Approved by Mr Museveni in February this year, the law called for repeat offenders of homosexuality to be sentenced to 14 years in prison and made it a criminal offence not to report someone for being gay.

Political supporters are pushing for the act to be reinstated.

Tickets to the Investment Forum are free, and available here.

Related topics: Africa, anti-gay law, anti-homosexuality act, Rebecca Kadaga, Tower Hamlets, troxy, Uganda, Uganda

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