Uganda unmoved by aid threats over anti-gay laws

Uganda unmoved by aid threats over anti-gay laws

LAST UPDATED // Friday, 28 February 2014 14:39

The Ugandan government has been threatened with foreign aid cuts after its president Yoweri Museveni recently enacted severe anti-gay laws.

Following the decree three European countries withdrew millions in direct support to the nation which depends on foreign aid for an estimated 20 per cent of its budget.

The Dutch government is suspending direct aid to the Ugandan government but will continue supporting non-governmental groups. Norway and Denmark are taking similar action, with Norway withdrawing at least US $8 million but increasing support to human rights and democracy organisations. Denmark is redirecting aid programs also worth US $8 million from the government to private and civic groups instead.

The US has also threatened aid cuts but Ugandan government spokesman Ofwono Opondo said the aid cuts show Ugandans “that the world does not owe them a living.”

“It's actually good that they removed the aid, so that we can live within the means we have,” he said.

President Museveni (pictured) said he wanted to deter Western groups from promoting homosexuality in Africa and the laws have proven popular Uganda, with commentators believing the will boost Museveni's popularity ahead of presidential elections in 2016.


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