By Sunnivie Brydum
Originally published on Advocate.com November 21 2012 3:03 PM ET
A bill that would proscribe the death penalty for homosexuality has been listed for discussion on the Ugandan Parliament's agenda, reports Box Turtle Bulletin.
The so-called kill the gays bill, which would impose harsh penalties on anyone engaging in same-sex sexual activities or "promoting homosexuality," first appeared on the parliamentary Orders Papers today, listed under "Business to Follow" after a lengthy daily agenda. BTB reports that the Orders Papers don't indicate at what point the bill might be brought up for a vote, since items listed under the "Business to Follow" heading can remain on the agenda for weeks, or be discussed in the immediate future.
Speaker of Parliament Rebecca Kadaga said last month that Parliament will pass the bill as a "Christmas gift" to the majority of Ugandans, who are "demanding it." Uganda's Parliament breaks for the Christmas holiday December 15. Last week Kadaga reiterated that statement in a letter to the Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Committee demanding that the bill be debated this week.
There has been some confusion over whether the death penalty for "aggravated homosexuality" still exists in the current version of the bill. The bill does in fact still call for capital punishment of homosexuality, according to BTB's breakdown of the legislation as it exists today. Aggravated homosexuality, as defined in the legislation, occurs when sex takes place with a minor, when one person is HIV-positive, when one is a parent or guardian of the other partner, when one person is in a position of authority, if one of the participants is disabled, or if one uses drugs or alcohol to "have an unlawful carnal connection with any person of the same sex." The bill also categorizes "repeat offenders" as perpetrators of "aggravated homosexuality."