Archbishop Thabo Makgoba has urged Uganda’s Anglican Church to oppose the anti-LGBTIQ+ bill
The Anglican Archbishop of Southern Africa, Thabo Makgoba, has called on his Ugandan counterpart to reject that country’s anti-LGBTIQ+ bill. The plea, however well intentioned, will likely be dismissed.
The Daily Maverick reported that Archbishop Makgoba had written to the Ugandan Anglican Church and its Archbishop calling for them to reject the horrific legislation that was passed by parliament this week.
“It is our prayer that as your country lives with the implications of this discriminatory bill, that the Church will promote inclusiveness and care for all God’s people,” said Makgoba.
“It is our sincere prayer that the President will not sign this bill into law and we pray that the church will urge him not to do so,” he added.
Makgoba’s words will undoubtedly fall on deaf ears. The proudly homophobic Anglican Church of Uganda is no friend to the LGBTIQ+ community and has a long history of supporting efforts to clamp down on its rights and dignity.
In 2014, Uganda’s now-former Anglican Archbishop, Stanley Ntagali, described homosexuality as “the devil’s agenda” during an anti-LGBTIQ+ rally.
He also praised President Museveni for signing the original 2013 Anti-Homosexuality Act which was later struck down by Uganda’s Constitutional Court on technical grounds.
“Like so many, I and the Church of Uganda are grateful to the President for signing into law the Anti-Homosexuality Act. We must assert our sovereignty and do what it takes to protect our children from being recruited into an immoral life and exploited by others,” Ntagali said.
In December last year, the current Archbishop, Stephen Kaziimba, stirred up anti-LGBTIQ+ fervour by perpetuating the false, ignorant and dangerous claim that there is an LGBTQ+ campaign to “recruit” children in Uganda.
“I want to alert all students, parents, and teachers that there are bad people trying to attract children into homosexuality by promising them money and sponsorship,” he said.
Last month, Archbishop Kaziimba also lashed out at the Church of England for proposing limited prayers for same-sex couples.
“The Church of England… has now departed from the Bible and their new message is the opposite message of the Bible. They are now saying, ‘Go, and sin some more’,” he said.
He repeated the claim that there are “well-funded gay organisations that are recruiting our children into homosexuality. Not only in Kampala, but all over the country. They target our poverty and promise our youth money.”
If signed by President Museveni, the Anti-Homosexuality Bill, 2023 will double down on criminalising homosexuality with life imprisonment. It will impose the death sentence for “aggravated homosexuality” and young people under the age of 18 who engage in “homosexual acts” could be jailed for three years.
It will jail anyone who participates in a same-sex marriage or “promotes homosexuality” as well as anyone who offers accommodation to LGBTIQ+ people. It’s also been reported that a legal firm could be fined simply for representing an LGBTIQ+ person.