Uganda says wants to pass anti-gay law as "Christmas gift"
KAMPALA (REUTERS) - Uganda's parliamentary speaker said she wanted to pass as a "Christmas gift" for Ugandans an anti-gay law, which rights groups have criticised for its draconian penalties against homosexuals.
The bill had initially proposed the death penalty for gays in the conservative east African country but still presents an array of jail terms for convicted homosexuals, including life imprisonment in certain circumstances.
Denounced as "odious" by US President Barack Obama, the bill has left veteran President Yoweri Museveni struggling to balance the demands of the evangelical church on one side and aid donors on the other.
Some international donors have threatened to cut aid if the legislation, which is now before a parliamentary committee and was first introduced in parliament in 2009, becomes law. "Ugandans want that law as a Christmas gift. They have asked for it and we'll give them that gift," parliament speaker Rebecca Kadaga told Reuters on Tuesday.