By Ronaldo N. Kalangi
Members of Parliament across the world attending the 139th Inter Parliamentary Union (IPU) Assembly in Geneva Switzerland have opposed plans by pro-gay nations to introduce the LGBT agenda.
LGBT stands for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender and describes particular groups within the gay community.
Representatives from the pro-gay nations had moved an amendment of the IPU rules to have debate on the rights of homosexuals even after objections from mainly Muslim and African members.
The proposal moved by the IPU Standing Committee on Democracy and Human Rights is meant to be considered on Wednesday, 16 October 2018 during the IPU Assembly sitting but members of the committee decided to introduce amendments to rules that could make it impossible for the General Assembly to change or debate anything passed by the standing committee.
The Committee on Democracy and Human Rights chaired by B. Tshireletso (Botswana) reported that the proposal had got overwhelming support in the Committee, ‘hence the decision should be adopted without debate in the Assembly’.
This prompted the current IPU President, Gabriela Cuevas Barron to propose that members lobby and campaign in order to vote on a question whether the Assembly can change the work plan and agenda of the Standing Committees.
Members of the Uganda delegation led by the Speaker of Parliament, Rebecca Kadaga, rallied many legislators in different geopolitical groups to support the motion, which could allow the Assembly to amend many issues in the committee report that had already been adopted by a smaller group of pro-gay supporters.
President Gabriela Cuevas Barron informed delegates that the results of the vote on the motion would be followed and no further motion will be allowed.
Following the vote, 671 MPs voted against the proposal with 120 abstaining throwing the Ugandan MPs in jubilation for their stand against any gay debate in the Assembly.
Hon. Latif Sebagala (Kawempe North) thanked the Speaker for lobbying other speakers to support the motion and also thanked countries that stood firm and supported the motion to allow the Assembly to amend the committee reports.
“We are very grateful to all IPU countries that have supported this; we knew about these back door plans and I informed the Parliamentary Union Islamic Conference. We all agreed that we should fight this item,” Ssebaggala said.
Hon Akamba Paul (Busiki County) referred to the vote as a first win in the battle that they came ready to fight.
He thanked the Asian community that stood with the African majority to fight LGBT issues that have often been smuggled onto the IPU agenda.
“Article 1 clause 2 of the IPU statute talks about defending and promoting only those rights that are accepted universally and issues of LGBT community as you can see have been widely opposed. IPU should restrain itself from such useless debates,” Akamba said.
Hon. Mwijukye Francis (Buhweju County) called upon legislators to always pass laws and vote on issues that will help their people and also promote their cultures.
He thanked all the legislators who voted in favor of the motion and called them the true leaders who respect the laws of God and the Constitution of the IPU Parliament.
“We shall continue to fight the LGBT issues on the international level until people here appreciate that same sex is inhuman and anti-culture,” he said.
The delegation from Uganda comprises of Hon. Osoru Mourine (Arua Municipality), Hon. Sebaggala Abdulatif (Kawempe Division North) Kabagyeni Rose (Kisoro District) Anyakun Esther (Nakapiripirit District), Akamba Paul (Busiki County), Mwijukye Francis (Buhweju County).