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Uganda deports UK gay play producer

David Cecil has been deported from Uganda, forcing him to leave his girlfriend and two children

Uganda deports UK gay play producer

Uganda has deported a David Cecil for producing and staging a play in August 2012, featuring a gay businessman who is killed by his own employees, a UK embassy spokesman has said.

David Cecil was arrested last September for ‘disobeying lawful orders’ as the play was performed without ‘authorisation’. The charges were subsequently dropped.

Last week Cecil was arrested again by immigration officers as Uganda begun proceedings to deport him on the grounds he was an ‘undesirable person’.

Cecil, who has a Ugandan girlfriend and two children in the capital, Kampala, was arrested by immigration officers last Wednesday.

Speaking with the BBC, Chris Ward, spokesman for the British High Commission in Kampala, said Cecil was deported on Monday (11 January) evening.

‘We are concerned that he was deported without being given an opportunity to challenge the deportation order through the Ugandan courts’, he said.

The play which caused the controversy – the River and the Mountain – told the story of a gay businessman killed by his own employees

It was performed at two theatres in Kampala last August.

Last month a court threw out the case against Cecil because of a lack of evidence.

Both male and female homosexual activity is illegal in Uganda – under its penal code ‘carnal knowledge against the order of nature’ between two males carries a potential penalty of life imprisonment.

There are unconfirmed reports that the Ugandan parliament is to debate today (12 February) the ‘Kill The Gays’ bill.

The bill aims to broaden the criminalization of same-sex relationships by dividing homosexuality into two categories; aggravated homosexuality and the offence of homosexuality.

Under the only version of the bill currently in the public domain, it gives the death penalty for ‘aggravated homosexuality’.

That is defined as gay acts committed by parents or authority figures, HIV-positive people, paedophiles and repeat offenders.

The ‘ offence of homosexuality’ includes same-sex sexual acts or being in a gay relationship, and will be prosecuted by life imprisonment.

The bill also includes harsh penalties against people who fail to report LGBT people to Ugandan authorities.

In November 2012, the speaker of the parliament of Uganda promised to enact the bill, which was originally put to the government in 2009.

The bill remained on the parliament’s Order Paper of 2012 and was widely expected to go before parliament before Christmas but was delayed.
 


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