Supporters of the human rights of LGBTQ people have failed to present a united front against Uganda's harsh Anti-Homosexuality Act. Despite app
Supporters of the human rights of LGBTQ people have failed to present a united front against Uganda’s harsh Anti-Homosexuality Act.
Despite appeals from Ugandan activists, the European Union announced on Sept. 6 that it would not suspend humanitarian aid to Uganda in response to the repressive new law.
In contrast, the World Bank has suspended loans to Uganda.
The United States did not slash aid, but did announce a travel ban against unnamed Ugandan officials who violate human rights,
Because of the AHA, several U.S. companies stopped purchasing textiles from Uganda, suspending a business arrangement established under the Africa Growth Opportunity Act.
Ellen Masi, public affairs officer at the U.S. Embassy in Uganda, said the AHA would harm the Ugandan economy, because many companies will balk at doing business in nations LGBTQ employees and customers are discriminated against.
“On March 28, more than 35 major multinational companies, including those with operations and employees in Uganda, released a statement highlighting the negative repercussions the [soon-to-be-passed] anti-gay law will have on their ability to do business in Uganda,” she said.
According to her, nine out of every 10 of the Fortune 500 companies maintain non-discrimination policies on the basis of sexual orientation.
“So, the enactment of the anti-gay law could deter foreign companies from doing business here in Uganda,” Masi added.
In a statement, Jutta Urpilainen, European Commissioner for International Partnerships, said the EU would continue to engage with Ugandan authorities and civil society to “ensure that all individuals, regardless of their sexual orientation and gender identity, are treated equally”.
She said “high-level EU officials have raised the issue with the Ugandan government, parliament and president”.