25 February 2014

Uganda: Zuma's ANC Rejects DA Motion to Condemn Uganda's Anti-Gay Bill

press release

The DA is deeply concerned and unspeakably disappointed that the ANC today blocked a DA motion without notice condemning the Anti-Homosexuality Bill signed into law by Ugandan President, Yoweri Museveni, yesterday.

It is also highly revealing that ANC MPs heckled me today when I raised this issue in the House, illustrating their brazen insensitivity if not support for this shocking measure.

Our motion would have ensured that South Africa continues with the human rights-based foreign policy established by President Nelson Mandela and that we re-gain our moral standing in the international arena.

It would have also made it clear to the Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, that her failure to act decisively on this issue - as made clear in her department's press release today - must be brought to an end.

The ANC in Parliament did not seek to propose any amendments to the motion. It was merely rejected "in its entirety".

This continues the shameful failure by President Zuma's administration to act on this matter.

We must indeed ask why it is that South Africa always resorts to silent diplomacy when it instead should be providing leadership on the continent. With our proud history of fighting injustice, and with one of the most progressive constitutions in the world, our government should have been first to publically object to the barbaric laws of a state right on our doorstep.

As the DA, we strongly condemn the passing of this Bill and the criminalisation of homosexuality anywhere on the continent and the world.

The South African government, and the African Union, which is being chaired by, Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, must be urged to act to ensure that Uganda's suppression of human rights does not go without censure.

The DA will continue to push for this to happen without delay.

Sandy Kalyan, DA Deputy Chief Whip

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