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11th Nov 2018

Ugandan MP who supports life imprisonment for homosexuals welcomed to House of Commons

James Dawson

Jovah Kamateeka is a supporter of Uganda’s ‘Anti-Homosexuality Bill’ which allows life imprisonment for gays and lesbians

A Ugandan MP who supports jailing homosexuals for life was hosted by Theresa May at a Downing Street reception and allowed to speak in the Commons last week, it has emerged.

Jovah Kamateeka has been a leading figure in passing anti-gay and lesbian legislation in the east African country, but was nevertheless welcomed at Number 10 on Wednesday evening at a reception for the Women MPs of the World conference.

The Sunday Times reports that she then delivered a speech from the Commons benches on Thursday and sat among British MPs, as part of a session hosted by Penny Mordaunt, the international development secretary. A total of 120 female politicians from 86 countries met in the Commons to discuss women’s rights issues.

Kamateeka is a supporter of Uganda’s 2014 ‘Anti-Homosexuality Bill’, which was initially dubbed the “Kill the Gays Bill” due to a clause allowing the death penalty, which was subsequently dropped. In April of this year, the 64-year-old said the anti-gay laws were required in the country saying they should “say no to bad practices.”

“We stood firm and passed the Anti-Homosexuality Bill in this House. It was only the courts of law that nullified our actions. As for us, we had passed the Bill into law,” she said. “God created man and woman for posterity. If we allow that men will marry men and women marry women, there will be no children and we will see the end of the world sooner.”

She added: “We should say no to practices and values that are not Ugandan and practices and values that are not African.”

It has been estimated that the legislation has contributed to a ten-fold rise in homophobic attacks in the country. Last month, activists attempting to open Uganda’s first centre for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people were told their plans were illegal. has contacted Downing Street for comment.