South Africa’s Archbishop Desmond Tutu on Tuesday urged Uganda to drop the Anti-Homosexuality Bill that’s expected to be voted on in that country’s parliament shortly.
Speaking in Nairobi, Kenya, Tutu told reporters: “I am opposed to discrimination, that is unfair discrimination, and would that I could persuade legislators in Uganda to drop their draft legislation, because I think it is totally unjust.”
The Nobel Laureate, who was attending an All Africa Conference of Churches meeting, went on to tell church leaders: “My brothers and sisters, you stood with people who were oppressed because of their skin colour.
“If you are going to be true to the Lord you worship, you are also going to be there for the people who are being oppressed for something they can do nothing about: their sexual orientation.”
Tutu commented that it if people could choose their sexual orientation then gay people would not choose to be homosexual “when you expose yourself to so much hatred, even to the extent of being killed”.
Tutu is one of the few high profile African voices to condemn prejudice against gays and lesbians.
He has called for the decriminalisation of homosexually in Africa, the acceptance of gays and lesbians by the world’s churches and for LGBTI people to be embraced as part of the human family.
Uganda’s speaker of parliament, Rebecca Kadaga, has promised to see the dreaded Anti Homosexuality Bill, which would further harshly penalise homosexuality in the country, passed by Christmas.