The Ugandan authorities has banned a number one LGBT rights group in a transfer deemed a “clear witch hunt” by campaigners.
Sexual Minorities Uganda (Smug) was suspended on Friday by the National Bureau for Non-Governmental Organisations (NGO bureau), a part of the nation’s inner affairs ministry.
An announcement learn: “The NGO bureau has taken the decision to halt the operations of Smug with immediate effect.”
It stated the charity had been suspended as a result of it didn’t reigister its title with the NGO bureau correctly.
Anti-gay and transphobic views are widespread in Uganda, the place homosexual relationships are unlawful and are punishable by as much as life in jail.
“This is a clear witch hunt rooted in systematic homophobia, fuelled by anti-gay and anti-gender movements,” stated Smug’s director, Frank Mugisha, who’s a homosexual Ugandan activist.
“This means that the life-saving work we do is on hold. We can’t protect and support vulnerable LGBT people,” he added.
“The background, of course, is homophobia and transphobia.”
Authorities rejected Smug’s try to register in 2012 as a result of they deemed the organisation’s title “undesirable”, in response to the NGO bureau.
“The refusal to legalise Smug’s operations… was a clear indicator that the government of Uganda and its agencies are adamant and treat Ugandan gender and sexual minorities as second-class citizens,” Smug stated in an announcement.
Smug has been campaigning for the rights of the LGBT group because it was established in 2004.
The group took to the courts in 2010 when it efficiently petitioned a choose to order a newspaper to cease publishing the names and pictures of homosexual males with the headline “Hang them”.
More lately, in 2021, Smug had known as out Ugandan politicians for utilizing homophobic sentiment to win votes by way of anti-gay speeches.
“The politicians are using the LGBT community as a scapegoat to gain support and win votes, and it is fuelling homophobia,” Smug’s director informed the Thomson Reuters Foundation on the time.