Ugandan Minister Defends His Raid of GLBT Conference

UG Pulse reports that the government Minister who raided a GLBT conference yesterday has defended his actions:

The Minister of Ethics and Integrity Fr. Simon Lokodo has defended his decision to raid a workshop being run by lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) activists in Entebbe.

This follows condemnation of the act by Amnesty International and several LGBT organizations who said the ministers actions were an abuse of freedom of assembly guaranteed to every Ugandan.

But Fr. Lokodo says as the person mandated to maintain good morals in Uganda, it was his duty to ensure people do not meet to discuss “immoral acts” in public places like hotels.

He said he raided the workshop together with police and asked them to stop or go in their private homes and discuss their issues from there.

“This is an outrageous attempt to prevent lawful and peaceful activities of human rights defenders in Uganda,” said Salil Shetty, Amnesty International’s Secretary General.

The Minister also attempted to order the arrest of Kasha Jacqueline Nabagasera, a prominent LGBT rights activist and winner of the 2011 Martin Ennals Award for Human Rights Defenders, who was forced to flee from the hotel.

The reasons for the attempted arrest were not immediately clear, but were reported to be linked to Kasha Jacqueline’s attempt to challenge the Minister’s actions.

“The Government of Uganda must protect all people against threats, violence and harassment irrespective of their real or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity.

The move comes days after the Anti-Homosexuality Bill was re-tabled in the Ugandan Parliament.

Big Brother much?

Some video from yesterday on the matter: