27 October 2006

Uganda: Govt Blocks Mukono Pig Project

THE government has suspended the activities of a community-based organisation in Mukono district whose leader has been giving out domestic animals to villagers on condition that they drop their names and adopt his Danish name.

The organisation is run by a Danish national artist Kristian Hornsleth.

The State Minister for Ethics and Integrity, Dr James Nsaba Buturo, yesterday told journalists at Parliament that he had written to Mukono district authorities to stop the organisation's activities immediately to pave way for a thorough investigation into Hornsleth's activities and agenda.

"The government cannot allow such a project to continue. This man owns a cult and he is a homosexual. His agenda is not good for the country. He uses obscene language and has no respect and kind words for God. As soon as he arrives in the country, police will catch up with him to investigate his activities," he said.

Buturo said after visiting Kasana and Namaliiri sub-counties where Hornsleth's activities are concentrated, he is convinced the Dane duped villagers to join his questionable organisation. "He promised them that his project would end the poverty amidst them, which has not happened. They are now regretting," he said.

Hornsleth, 43, came to Uganda in March and started the scheme in June, a project in which villagers pose for passport size photographs that indicate one of their names as Hornsleth.

Hornsleth told the Weekly Observer last month that his organisation is an art project and a clear business between him and the villagers.

"They help me bring my art project to life and they get the animals as fee. They let me photograph them in the villages and they take the name Hornsleth. I asked them to participate in my art project for an agreed fee and they accepted," he said.

By October, Hornsleth had given out 70 goats and 270 pigs to beneficiaries who have all adopted the Hornsleth name. The project is worth Shs45m.

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