NPR on Uganda

This morning Barbara Bradley Hagerty has a Morning Edition spot on Uganda reminding us that the Rolling Stone case may be decided this week.

In October, a tabloid called Rolling Stone — no relation to the American magazine — published an article headlined “100 Pictures of Uganda’s Top Homos Leak.” The article listed names, addresses and hangouts of gay men and lesbians.

Frank Mugisha saw his photo. Then he noticed the subhead: “Hang them.”

“I was shaken up. I was freaked out. I was scared,” says Mugisha, who heads up the group Sexual Minorities Uganda. “I’m like, hang them? What is the general Ugandan community going to do to us if the media is calling for us to be hanged?”

On Tuesday, a judge in Uganda is expected to decide whether Rolling Stone may continue to publish the names of gay men and lesbians. Gay activists say that outing them puts them in danger. For example, a couple of days after his name and photo were printed, Mugisha received a text message from a university student.

“It said, ‘We don’t like homosexuals in Uganda and you guys should be executed. We know where you live, we know who you hang out with, we know who your friends are and we shall come and deal with you as the youth of Uganda.'”

This text sounds very much like the promise of the Martin Ssempa colleague and Islamic cleric Multah Bukenya who promised youth squads to round up homosexuals.

The article also provides some of the interview Bahati gave to NPR when he was DC for the government management conference two weeks ago. As I noted on Friday, the Parliament is recessed until February. The Anti-Homosexuality Bill will likely be acted on at that time.