News reports are hinting that the proposed anti-gay legislation proposed by a member of the parliament in Uganda may be dead. Still clergy around Africa, including Archbishop Desmond Tutu, protest the legislation and are leading the fight against draconian anti-gay laws across the continent.
A Ugandan parliamentary panel said on Friday there is little backing for the country's widely-condemned anti-gay bill and no timetable had been set for its debate.
"I think it is useless and will not achieve what it intends to achieve," said Alex Ndeezi, a member of the Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Committee tasked with reviewing the bill before it can be presented to the house...
...The panel's chairman Stephen Tashyoba said the draft law was not a priority.
"As far as I am concerned, we really have more urgent matters to discuss like electoral reforms, which are already behind schedule," he said.
The Guardian reports on a protest by sixty African civil and human rights groups against the criminalization of homosexuality in Africa.
Battle has been joined against the criminalisation of homosexuality in Africa. Last week, Archbishop Desmond Tutu and more than 60 civil society and human rights groups called on Uganda to reject proposed punishments for gay sex that range from life imprisonment to the death penalty.
Activists in Malawi were steeled by pressure from Human Rights Watch for the dropping of a case against the first gay couple to seek marriage in the conservative country. Steve Monjeza, 26, and 20-year-old Tiwonge Chimbalanga will stand trial this week after holding a traditional ceremony last December.
Human Rights Watch said: "The case is an affront to essential principles of non-discrimination and equality. It singles out two people as criminals simply because they love each other."
The case has focused attention on a homophobic backlash sweeping Africa, partly because gay men and lesbians are becoming more assertive about their rights, partly because of intolerance fanned by interventions from evangelical churches in America.
Last month the challenge was put in context when the Zimbabwean prime minister, Morgan Tsvangirai, often lionised by western liberals, backed President Robert Mugabe's position that gay rights could have no place in the national constitution.