President Yoweri Museveni has defended his decision to sign the Anti-Homosexuality Bill into law, emphasizing the need for Ugandans to stay strong and unwavering. Speaking at the ongoing NRM Parliamentary Caucus Retreat in Kyankwanzi district, the President, accompanied by the First Lady Mrs. Janet Museveni, reiterated that Uganda will not be swayed by intimidation or external pressure.
The retreat, now on its 5th day, has gathered over 400 NRM Caucus members, including Independents aligned with the NRM. Key attendees include Vice President Rtd. Major Jessica Alupo, Prime Minister Rt. Hon. Robinah Nabbanja, NRM Secretary General Hon. Richard Todwong, as well as Cabinet Ministers and the leadership of the NRM Secretariat.
President Museveni praised the Members of Parliament for their support and emphasized that fighting for what is right will ensure victory. He explained that he returned the bill to Parliament to address certain inconsistencies and illogicalities. The President urged the caucus to always pursue truth and not seek favour with any particular group. He emphasized that the issue of homosexuality is a serious matter that requires careful consideration.
Reflecting on the history of homosexuality in Uganda, President Museveni stated that it had been a private matter in the past and not widely promoted. He shared that his thorough analysis, including consultations with the Parliamentary Committee on Legal Affairs, led to the clarification and amendment of the Homosexuality Bill. He clarified that suspicion or mere suspicion alone cannot be criminalized, but recruitment into disorientation and violent acts such as child rape would be severely punished.
While the President expressed confidence in the signed bill, he acknowledged concerns raised by a World Bank official regarding two specific areas. He assured the NRM Caucus that if necessary, these issues would be referred back to Parliament for scrutiny and amendment. President Museveni emphasized the NRM’s consistent stance on important matters and urged the caucus members to be prepared for any challenges ahead.
The President concluded by affirming his unwavering commitment to the cause, stating that the signing is final and the government will not be swayed. He reminded the caucus that facing such battles requires determination and readiness for sacrifice, emphasizing that soft life is incompatible with the realities of war.