Uganda gays have been persecuted for decades. British colonialism, Idi Amin’s tyrannical dictatorship and the current government’s respective prohibitions on homosexuality have all contributed to the African nation’s negligent gay rights laws. Or, rather, lack thereof. While hundreds have toiled in silence, two lesbians are fighting back.
Victor Mukasa and Yvonne Ooyo have filed a lawsuit against the government after John Lubega, a government official, raided their home, confiscated “gay” material and arrested Ooyo. While in custody, Ooyo claims, prison authorities verbally and sexually assaulted her: “They kept teasing me about whether I am a girl or a boy”. Not only are the cops assholes, they’re children.
Realizing their gay lives are illegal in Uganda, the ladies have filed a lawsuit claiming the government violated their right to privacy, property and due process. Amin’s regime broadened police powers, giving them the right to raid private homes. Coppers do not, however, have the authority to remove materials, as Lubega – who is not a cop – did in Musaka and Ooyo’s case. Musaka, who chairs gay activist coalition, Sexual Minorities Uganda, tells Monitor:
We want people to see that what we suffer is similar to other oppressed groups. We are not asking for the right to marry, we are asking for the same rights that are guaranteed to all Ugandan citizens, even prisoners. My homosexuality does not deprive me of my citizenship of Uganda. I am only exercising my Constitutional rights.
The case recalls a 1986 American case, Bowers v. Hardwick, in which Michael Hardwick challenged a Georgia law allowing cops to enter his home and arrest him for having anal sex. Hardwick lost. Hopefully history won’t repeat itself in Uganda, where “threatened” Ethic Minister James Nsaba Buturo claims Mukasa and Ooyo suffer “under the false notion that homosexuality can be a human rights issue”. Yeah, we gays must be out of our minds to think they qualify as human. Obviously we’re demon monsters from hell – and not even earth’s hell. We from some intergalactic hell and came here to take over. The sad this is, Buturo and Uganda President Yoweri Museveni are nutty enough to believe such an outrageous theory.