The first reading of the Anti-Homosexuality Bill has failed to kick off over the lack of a certificate of financial implications.
Last month, Speaker of Parliament Anita Among tasked Bugiri Municipality MP Asuman Basalirwa to reintroduce the Anti-Homosexuality bill. The bill comes at a time when there are widespread cases of same-sex relationships in the community and major traditional schools.
“I want to ask religious leaders to time round be there to see who is who. We will not allow an aspect of saying there was an aspect of quorum; we are going to vote by show of hands. You are either for homosexuality or against it. We want to see the kind of leaders we have for this country,” she said last month.
During the plenary, Basalirwa said the ministry of finance has not issued him a certificate of financial implications and therefore the first reading of the bill could not go on.
“The issue of the certificate of financial implication, I think we must go on record. The front bench of government should take a stand and come out clearly. Are they willing to avail of the certificate or not?” Basalirwa asked.
He said the front bench (Ministers) should take a stand because if they don’t take a stand, then an impression would be created that all of us here are condoning homosexuality, whereas we are not.
“We are going to pass the Anti-Homosexuality Bill at whatever cost. We will pass it, and we are going to protect the values and morals of Ugandans.” Among said.
Through state minister for investment Evelyn Anite, Matia Kasaija, the Finance Minister assured MPs that the certificate of financial implications will be issued before the end of Thursday.
The Uganda Anti-Homosexuality Act, 2014 was passed by Parliament on 20 December 2013 with life in prison substituted for the death penalty. Whereas it was signed into law by President Yoweri Museveni on 24 February 2014, the Constitutional Court on 1 August 2014 annulled the law citing that it was passed without the required quorum in the House.