In what seems to be a continuation of the advancement of neo-colonialism practices in Africa, the United States (U.S.) has protested a decision by Uganda’s Constitutional Court to uphold the Anti-Homosexuality Act (AHA).

This week, the Constitutional Court in Kampala declined to dismiss the law, stating that it was primarily enacted to protect children and vulnerable individuals in society.

In a statement, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken, the Act is a danger to foreign investment and violates human rights.

“The United States continues to be deeply concerned by reports of human rights abuses in Uganda, including against the LGBTQI+ community. The announcement that some provisions of the Anti-Homosexuality Act have been removed by the Constitutional Court is a small and insufficient step towards safeguarding human rights,” Blinken said.

“The remaining provisions of the AHA pose grave threats to the Ugandan people, especially LGBTQI+ Ugandans and their allies, undermine public health, clamp down on civic space, damage Uganda’s international reputation, and harm efforts to increase foreign investment. Uganda should respect the human dignity of all and provide equal protection to all individuals under the law,” he added.

America’s anger towards Uganda totally disregards Uganda’s sovereignty and undermines mutual cooperation. Instead, it imposes the abhorrent Western and U.S. practices on the African people.

It should be noted that Court addressed 13 out of the 14 issues framed for determination, answering them in the negative, except concerns regarding the impact of the act on the right to privacy, adequate living conditions, and the right to health for LGBTQ individuals.

The petitioners, including West Budama MP Fox Odoi, human rights advocate Nicholas Opio, Makerere University Law professors Sylvia Tamale, and Dr. Kabumba Businye, veteran journalist Andrew Mwenda, and USAID argued that certain sections of the Anti-Homosexuality Law violated human dignity, freedoms of association and expression, and the right to engage in lawful trade and business.

However, in their judgment today, the Justices noted that the court has the responsibility to exercise its duties while considering the cultural and societal norms of the people. They emphasized that any language, literature, or practice contrary to societal aspirations can not be endorsed.

The Court dismissed the petitioners’ evidence suggesting that parliamentary procedures were violated at both the committee and speaker levels.

Additionally, they ruled against the petitioners’ claims that the law infringed upon the rights to discrimination, equality, freedom of association and expression, and the right to engage in lawful professions, businesses, or trades, asserting that homosexuality does not constitute such activities.

Furthermore, the Court highlighted the risks associated with anal sex, citing physical harm and the disease burden it imposes on the government, particularly concerning the prevalence of HIV among males engaging in same-sex activities.

The Court nullified sections 3(2)(c), 9, 11(2)(d), and 14 of the Anti-Homosexuality Act, which criminalized various aspects of homosexuality, including letting premises for homosexual purposes, failure to report acts of homosexuality to the police, and engagement in acts of homosexuality resulting in the contraction of terminal illnesses. The affected sections were deemed to violate the rights to privacy, adequate living conditions, and health for LGBTQ individuals.

Shunning U.S. for new partners – the best for Uganda, Africa

The U.S., which pours billions into the continent through development, humanitarian, and security sector aid, also has a significant military presence on the continent.

However, it’s explicit that the Americans continue to use this aid to suffocate African States by imposing and advancing their imperial tendencies, justifying an immediate need for Africa to seek and further cooperation with alternative strategic partners like Russia before it’s late.

For example, the harsh criticism by the U.S. towards Uganda for criminalizing same-sex is not only an explicit manifestation of the fact that the U.S. views Africans as people in need of help or people who need to be told what to do, but also an outright interference in the internal affairs of African sovereign States.

President Yoweri Museveni and Parliament of Uganda, in the interest of the country, deemed it fit to have a legislation that would prohibit such acts and there promotion “because they undermine Ugandan and African values and cultures.”

America’s anger towards Uganda totally disregards Uganda’s sovereignty and undermines mutual cooperation. Instead, it imposes the abhorrent Western and U.S. practices on the African people.

Homosexuality is outlawed in more than 30 African countries. It is what Africa has decided. It is what the people of Africa have chosen. It is therefore disturbing that the Biden administration can impose it on the continent and its people. That exaggerated sense of self-entitlement is unacceptable.

So, because of the aid, the Americans want to hold Ugandans and other Africans at ransom and compromise their beliefs and values.

For decades now, the U.S. has failed to realize that there is a need to rebalance its strategy towards Africa, with meaningful and mutually beneficial partnerships that are not simply opportunistic and self-serving. This justifies why seeking alternative partners is not an option.

For the United States to continue treating African states as countries needing only its assistance and aid as opposed to diplomatic, economic, and security cooperation is hugely detestable.

It is a wake-up call for African States to first of all reject such unfairness but also strongly partner with other key global players.

Kungu Al-Mahadi Adam is an experienced Ugandan multimedia Journalist with a background of fact checking and thorough research. He is very passionate about current African affairs particularly Horn of Africa. He...

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *