Uganda Parliament Says UK Sanctioned Speaker Over Anti-LGBTQ Law

(Bloomberg) -- The UK said it imposed sanctions on Uganda’s speaker of parliament for being involved in corruption, but the legislature says the lawmaker is being punished for supporting anti-LGBTQ legislation.

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Anita Among and two others were sanctioned “for stealing from the poorest communities in Uganda,” Deputy Foreign Secretary Andrew Mitchell said in a statement Tuesday.

The three individuals will face travel bans and asset freezes, according to the statement.

Thousands of stolen iron sheets meant to be used as roofing material for vulnerable communities were redirected to politicians and “Among benefitted from the proceeds,” Mitchell’s office said in its statement.

“The iron sheets have been used as a ruse to conceal the real, unstated but clearly obvious reason for the sanctions - which is Rt. Hon. Speaker’s stance on the recently enacted Anti-Homosexuality Act,” the Ugandan Parliament said in a response posted on X.

“The Rt. Hon. Speaker has never been charged with corruption in any courts of law, contrary to the insinuation in the statement,” the parliament said.

Read more: Why Uganda’s LGBTQ Community Is Under Renewed Fire

Uganda’s anti-LGBTQ law enacted last year penalizes people for offenses including promoting and facilitating same-sex relations, with punishments including life sentences and even death for so-called “aggravated homosexuality.”

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