IN QUOTES

Producer Jailed In Uganda For Gay Play: “This Is A Peaceful Country”

My opinion is that the dialogue needs to take place within Uganda, so I’ve got some misgivings about the involvement of international rights groups. Within Uganda, the debate is not happening on a street level or even a societal level. It’s being led by a minority of people whom I would regard as extreme and not representative of the average Ugandan. I haven’t really come across anyone who seriously wants to kill gays here…this is a peaceful country. It’s not a country of extremists as it’s frequently portrayed in the media.

“I would say it’s not always helpful for organizations to try and bring pressure on the government. If you imagine Ugandans were attempting, using some kind of leverage, to force Britain to criminalize homosexuality, you can imagine the uproar. So people need to be careful to respect the sovereignty of Uganda. Within many people’s lifetimes here Uganda was a colonized country. I think it needs to find its own way and any overt attempt to influence policy here is misplaced, can backfire and does backfire.”

David Cecil, the British producer jailed in Uganda for staging a play about homosexuality, addresses his imprisonment and homosexuality in Uganda in an interview with Channel 4 News.