Magembe Norman tells GSN his life has taken a turn for the worse for trying to defend Uganda’s LGBT community.
Norman has submitted a complaint to the International Criminal Court (ICC) requesting the immediate arrests of Uganda MP David Bahati, pastor Martin Ssempa and Rolling Stone editor Giles Muhamel for their roles in persecuting the LGBT community in Uganda.
Norman said he’s received death threats from fellow Ugandans who see him as someone who betrayed the country. He also said his father has accused him of disgracing the family and has since kicked him out of his home.
In his letter to the ICC, Norman wrote: ‘I respectfully request that you obtain ICC arrest warrants for the accused.
‘The ICC has in recent years been criticized and people have questioned its credibility because of the unfair treatment it accords to different complaints brought to its attention.
‘I am neither a gay, high profile, an influential or powerful person and so people may ask "who am I to file such a high profile complaint"?
‘But please don’t look at my personality but do your work professionally to ensure that the culture of homophobia is destroyed in Uganda. As you read my complaint now, there is a gay person being tortured and why should we allow such attacks to happen when you can do something to stop them?’
Norman said to GSN: ‘The reason I want this information to be known internationally is because I want people around the world to show support for my complaint.
‘At this point, I am feeling lonely in my search for justice and so I need the international community to get behind me to ensure these three Ugandans are jailed for causing such horrific pain to innocent gay men and lesbians.
‘Similarly, I want to expose the inhuman treatment I have been receiving from my family and the society at large as a result of sending this complaint to the International criminal court.’
In his letter, Norman gives the ICC a detailed outline of the homophobic crimes Bahati, Ssema and Muhamel have committed.
Bahati, a Ugandan MP, submitted the ‘Kill The Gays’ bill to punish homsexual sex and anyone who is HIV positive with death.
According to Norman, Bahati has expressed a desire to ‘kill every last gay person’.
Pastor Martin Ssempa is also guilty of inciting gay genocide in Uganda, reportedly showing hard-core gay pornography in churches and congregations to stir anti-gay sentiment.
Ssempa has called lesbians and transgender individuals abnormal, saying: ‘Because they don’t have the equipment, they begin to use gadgets like bananas, they use carrots, they use cucumbers and other metalized ones, and they put them inside themselves… because they are not normal.’
Norman also calls for the arrest of Giles Muhame, the former editor of tabloid newspaper Rolling Stone, who also appears in the documentary film Call Me Kutchu that follows gay activists in Uganda.
In 2010, Muhame published a front-page article titled 100 Pictures of Uganda’s Top Homos Leak. The story listed the names, addresses and photographs of 100 homosexuals alongside a yellow banner that said ‘Hang Them’.
During filming of the documentary, gay rights activist David Kato was brutally murdered by two hammer strikes to the head.
On David Kato’s death, Muhame said: ‘I have no regrets about the story. We were just exposing people who were doing wrong.’ Muhame said Kato ‘brought death upon himself. He hasn’t lived carefully. Kato was a shame to this country.’
Norman told GSN that he’s received a letter from MP Dillon, the Head of Information and Evidence Unit at the Netherlands-based ICC acknowledging his complaint.
The ICC has told Norman: ‘As soon as a decision is reached, we will inform you, in writing, and provide you with reasons for this decision.’