Uganda Kanga

Uganda Kanga

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Kanga Quote translation: "Because we love love and make no apologies for it!"

- Quote submitted by AFRA Kenya


This is the #TRTL kanga honoring Uganda's Queer history.


The kanga features Kasha Nabagesera and David Kato, who are widely considered to be the founding mother and father of the Uganda Queer rights movement. It also celebrates the organizations "Sexual Minorities Uganda, SMUG" and "Freedom and Roam Uganda, FARUG". SMUG was founded by Victor Mukasa, a trans activist, in March 2004 while FARUG was founded in 2003 by Kasha.


Despite having a well-documented pre-colonial history of homosexual cultural practices, homosexual acts have been illegal in Uganda since 1902, with those charged facing up to seven years imprisonment. Under the influence of the American evangelical movement (true story) Ugandan Member of Parliament David Bahati presented an anti-homosexuality bill in 2009 (known as the "Kill The Gays" bill) that introduced the death penalty for some homosexual acts and compelled Ugandans to report Queer people to the police or face three years imprisonment. In 2010, a local tabloid newspaper, Rolling Stone (Uganda) published the names, addresses and photographs of people believed to be LGBTIQ+, calling for their execution. The following year, David Kato was murdered after winning a lawsuit against the newspaper. Today - January 26th, 2019 - marks the eighth anniversary of his death.


Unfortunately, the anti-homosexuality bill was passed in December 2013, with the death-penalty clause amended to life imprisonment for "aggravated homosexuality". In August 2014, however, Uganda's Constitutional Court annulled the anti-homosexuality law on a technicality after the country suffered several sanctions and funding cuts.