Monday, December 28, 2009

Debunking lies; The Death Penalty

I have been lax. Very lax.

In fighting the Bahati bill, (Uganda’s Bill No 18, the Anti-Homosexuality bill) I have to fight with the truth. That means, I have to continuously point to the text of the Bill.

Remember, this bill was tabled in parliament at the first reading. It then goes to the different committees, where it is debated, there are public hearings, and recommendations are made from each committee. As far as I know, the text of the bill does NOT change. If I am correct, the text of the bill will change when there is a second reading. Or third reading, when it is finally voted on to be passed, or rejected by parliament.

That is to make sure that people don’t lie, especially those who are supporting the bill.

And, there are lots of other lies being given about it. By Ssempa, Bahati, Nsaba-Buturo. The latter seems not to tell consistent lies, as far as I see. Apart from promising that I have 20 Million USD in the bank, which I haven’t yet got. (Christmas holidays, I think. The banks were closed. Possibly it is on its way.)

But, Bahati and Ssempa, despite writing the bill, and knowing exactly what is in the bill text, are going around saying one lie after another. Things that they are pretty sure are not in the bill.

I have not been systematically shooting down those lies. Well, I am starting to do that. So, this post is ‘Debunking Lies One.’ Others will surely follow. Fact check me, sometimes I might be wrong. But, I will try not to be….!

Okay for the first one.

Bahati, and Ssempa are very angry with the world media. They say that the world media has taken them out of context. That the death penalty is not for the homosexual male consenting couples.

Here is Bahati, and Ssempa, as they were on UBC, the government television station. Text from Box Turtle Bulletin. You can watch the video too.

Bahati: Just in a second, just to emphasize what Pastor Ssempa has said, that actually there has been a lot of distortion, er on the clauses within the bill. Er, the pro-gay community picked on the death, the word death, in the bill, and just turned it around to attract sympathy in their country. We are not providing for death penalty for two adults, we are providing for death penalty to be consistent with the Defilement Act that we passed in 2007, er where an adult, engages, rapes, a minor of 18 years and below… (Ssempa: a girl) and when that adult has HIV/AIDS, or you are a guardian, you are a parent, you want to rape the kid that you are looking after, this is what we are proposing.

THAT IS A LIE. Oh, we shall first tackle the statement about the death penalty.
We are not providing for death penalty for two adults,

Here is what the Bill that Bahati wrote says, regarding the death penalty.

Aggravated homosexuality.
(1) A person commits the offense of aggravated homosexuality where the
(a) person against whom the offence is committed is below the age of 18 years;
(b) offender is a person living with HIV;
(c) offender is a parent or guardian of the person against whom the offence is committed;
(d) offender is a person in authority over the person against whom the offence is committed;
(e) victim of the offence is a person with disability;
(f) offender is a serial offender, or
(g) offender applies, administers or causes to be used by any man or woman any drug, matter or thing with intent to stupefy overpower him or her so as to there by  enable any person to have unlawful carnal connection with any person of the same sex,
(2) A person who commits the offence of aggravated homosexuality shall be liable on conviction to suffer death.
(3) Where a person is charged with the offence under this section, that person shall undergo a medical examination to ascertain his or her HIV status.

So, Bahati is actually lying. I, as a gay Ugandan, one who is above the age of majority, and the age of consent would suffer the Death Penalty in these cases, which are very, very clearly laid out in the Anti-Homosexual Bill 2009. I get death if-

  • My partner is a minor.

  • I have HIV and have homosexual sex. Yes, that is what the bill says. Don’t believe the lies.
    In fact, as soon as I am arrested, according to that bill, I will be forced to have an HIV test. If that test comes back positive, I will be charged with a crime for which the punishment is DEATH. Bahati should stop lying.

  • I am the parent, or Guardian of my partner.

  • When I am ‘in authority’ over my partner. That means lots of things. But, if I have gay sex with a partner that I employ, I am in ‘authority’. It doesn’t matter whether the person consents. No sorry. It just doesn’t. What matters is that I have been proven to have had gay sex with a person over whom I am in authority. So, the punishment is DEATH. Again, Bahati, STOP LYING.

  • My partner is disabled in ANY way. Physical, mental, etc. If my partner is disabled, then, even when they are my lovers, consenting lovers, I suffer the DEATH PENALTY. Unless, you assume that people who are disabled don’t have sex….!
    Again, Bahati, STOP LYING.

  • If I am a ‘serial offender’. This is absurd. A serial offender is well defined in the bill. That is just English. If I am arrested and convicted of having had gay sex, well, that is my first offence. (Sentence is Life imprisonment; the Bahati Bill). If I am convicted again, then the punishment is automatic. Death.
    Bahati. STOP LYING.

  • If I rape someone.

What I want to drive home is that, the guy who wrote this bill, Bahati, ably assisted by Martin Ssempa, is lying, repeatedly, even when the bill is out there in the world. It is a public document. It is here.

But, Ssempa, and Bahati, continue to lie as to when they have mandated a gay person like me is to receive the death penalty.

Send a message to Bahati. Tell him, STOP LYING. That is simple English. I bet you he will understand it.


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