We stand in solidarity with Uganda’s LGBTIQ+ community

March 28, 2023

We are a collective of human rights and civil society organizations working on social justice and LGBTIQ+ rights in different parts of the world. As supporters and allies of LGBTIQ+ individuals and movements in East Africa, we stand in solidarity with the LGBTIQ+ population and civil society organizations in Uganda and condemn in the strongest terms the anti-homosexuality bill recently passed by the Ugandan Parliament.

If signed into law, this bill would make it a crime to identify as LGBTIQ+ and would hand authorities broad powers to target sexual minorities in Uganda, who already face criminalization and violence. This bill is truly draconian, including life sentences for having same-sex relations – and the death penalty for same-sex relations with people under 18 or if the “perpetrator” is HIV positive.

We call upon President Yoweri Museveni not to sign the bill. As President, we urge him to show how Uganda is committed to protecting its citizens in more vulnerable situations and doing no harm to people just for being who they are. The Ugandan police should also note that the bill is not a law yet and therefore cannot be used to deny LGBTIQ+ Ugandans the right to access justice.

Increased hate crimes and human rights violations

As human rights organizations we are deeply concerned that this law will lead to even more hate crimes and human rights violations against individuals who identify as LGBTIQ+ in a country where homophobia is already rampant. This law goes far beyond any existing anti-homosexual legislation because it targets an individual’s very existence.

We are equally concerned by the shrinking civic space in other countries in East and Central Africa and witness how wider circles of LGBTIQ+ allies are effectively being silenced.

We need solidarity – now more than ever – from the international community

We call upon the global community, including the African Union, European Union, and the United Nations, to demonstrate their condemnation by imposing political sanctions against Uganda aimed specifically at the Ugandan political class, parliamentarians, and other enablers of the bill. This includes restrictions on admission of listed persons (travel ban, visa restrictions), including family members, and freezing of assets belonging to listed persons or entities held in foreign countries.

We ask that other African governments demonstrate the continent’s commitment to human rights by appealing to the President of Uganda to focus on governance issues facing the country and not to use the LGBTIQ+ community as a distraction or scapegoat.

We call on the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights to speak out and remind Uganda of its obligations under the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights that requires Uganda to protect and respect the rights of “all persons.” We specifically refer to resolution 275 on “Protection against Violence and other Human Rights Violations against Persons on the basis of their real or imputed Sexual Orientation or Gender Identity” as passed by the commission in 2014.

Continued support – but no withdrawal of financial aid

Civil society organizations, development partners, and allies should continue giving all necessary support to the LGBTIQ+ community in Uganda. This includes security protection, legal assistance, and technical support – as well as advocacy efforts to stop this bill from becoming law. We encourage development partners and the donor community to continue providing financial aid to the country and through civil society groups in the country. This kind of support is life-saving because the economic rights of the LGBTIQ+ community are already under threat, and without this aid social and economic inequalities will only deepen further.

Our group will organize a series of activities and protests in the coming days to make our position heard in different parts of the continent and globally.

Statement endorsed by

Access to Good Health Initiative (AGHI)

African Focus for Youth Development (AFFYD)


Alliance for Dynamics Initiative

Amahoro Human Respect

Amnesty International, Kenya

Arus Pelangi

Cangkang Queer

Center for Health, Education and Vulnerable Support (CHEVS)


CHOICE for Youth and Sexuality

CLDH Lebanon

COC Nederland

Community Development and Advocacy Association

Community health initiative for youth in Nigeria

Courageous Sisters Ghana

Crème de la Crème House of Fame foundation ( CDLC)


Excellent Improved Reach Out Initiative

Fòs Feminista

GALANG Philippines



GayA Nusantara

Gaya Warna Lentera

Gender Diversity Movement

Global Interfaith Network

Glorious Interfaith Initiative

Health Fonds Trust Zimbabwe


Hope Alliance Foundation

ILGA World

Initiative for Gender Equality and Sexual Reproductive Health (IGE-SRH).

Initiative for Highlighting Equitable Access to Rights (I-HEAR), Nigeria.

Initiative for Sexual Reproductive Health and Rights Awareness (ISRHRA)

Initiative Sankofa d’Afrique de l’Ouest (ISDAO)

Interfaith Diversity Network of West Africa (IDNOWA)

Intersex Community of Zimbabwe (ICoZ)

Intersex Nigeria (Center for Healthcare Development and Youth Empowerment)

Jaringan Transgender Indonesia

Key Watch Ghana


Komunitas Sehati Makassar

LAMBDA (Mozambican Association for Sexual Minorities Defense)

Liliane Fonds

MPact – Global Action on Gay Men’s Health and Rights

Namibia Equal Rights Movement

Namibian Sex Workers Alliance

Narasi Toleransi

One Love Sisters

Pan Africa ILGA

Perempuan Mahardhika

Positive Vibes

Priority on Rights and Se4xual Health

Purpose Amplified Namibia

Rainbow Chamber of Commerce, Ghana

Rainbow Reflections of Namibia

Resilience Sisters Ghana

Responsive Action for Sustainable Empowerment Initiative

Rightify Ghana

Rojali Papua

Sahabat Sulteng

Sanggar Swara

SOGI Campaigns

Solace Initiative

South African Network of People who Use Drugs (SANPUD)

Talita Kum

The Initiative for Equal Rights (TIERs)

The Lebanese Center for Human Rights (CLDH)

The Young Feminists Movement (Y-Fem Namibia Trust)



Transmen Indonesia


Wave Makers Initiative for Health and Youth Empowerment, (WIHYE)



Women’s Health and Equal Rights (WHER) Initiative

Women Initiative for Sustainable Empowerment and Equality (WISE)

Work Place Pride

Young Women’s Leadership Institute (YWLI)