Friday, March 31, 2023

Uganda dance music festival cleared to go ahead amid concerns it ‘promotes gays’

The Nyege Nyege pageant will now happen subsequent week however underneath “strict guidelines,” in keeping with Ugandan Prime Minister Robina Nabbanja, quoted in local media reports.
“The event (Nyege Nyege) will go on but under strict guidelines. It attracts thousands of foreign tourists; we can’t miss out on this opportunity at a time when the country is recovering from the effects of Covid-19,” Nabbanja mentioned at a gathering of stakeholders, together with the organizers.

The four-day pageant would be the first after a three-year hiatus due to the pandemic. Though ‘nyege nyege’ may be loosely translated to induce in Luganda, the nation’s official language, it additionally means attractive in Swahili, which is often spoken within the area.

MPs had Tuesday raised considerations concerning the pageant and its impression on “sexual immorality” within the nation and deliberate to cease it going forward.

“It’s going to attract all kinds of people from all over the world, bringing all kinds of actions that are unAfrican and non-Ugandan into our community,” lawmaker Sarah Opendi mentioned in parliament, accusing the pageant of “recruiting” younger folks into the LGBT group.

But Ugandan tourism minister Martin Mugarra defended the occasion in the home, saying 8,000 foreigners had already booked tickets. However, speaker Anitah Among took objection to his assertion and declared that the pageant wouldn’t occur.

“We are not going to allow that function to take place. How do you sell tickets at the expense of people’s children? You’re promoting gays in Uganda,” she mentioned with out proof, from the official speaker’s chair. “No function should take place. Next item!”

Ugandan LGBTQ organization calls government shutdown of its operations a 'clear witch-hunt'

Ugandan Ethics and Integrity minister Rose Lilly Akello advised parliament that her ministry and the police had beforehand met with Nyege Nyege’s organizers and given them situations. They have been to bar any kids under 18 from attending, anyone indecently dressed and outlaw any immoral actions.

But exterior the home, she doubled down on her opposition to Nyege Nyege going down. “It is an event which promotes immorality which is not wanted in our country,” Minister Akello advised reporters. “Parliament has resolved that it must stop because they take underage children and do a lot of immoral activities there.”

Organizers have introduced about 300 performers unfold over seven phases in Itanda Falls, Jinga a picturesque location on the shores of the River Nile.

The cost of “promoting” homosexuality has been leveled in opposition to Nyege Nyege earlier than and led to a short-lived cancelation of its final occasion in 2019.

Akello’s predecessor on the Ethics docket, the now deceased Catholic priest Fr Simon Lokodo famously banned the controversial pageant however was overruled by one other minister.

CNN has reached out to even organizers for remark however has not heard again.

Derek Debru, co-director of the pageant promised a “very special” occasion in an interview with the East African newspaper in February. “We will pull all the stops to make this the greatest edition to date, to reward fans that have stayed with us over the years and to celebrate our growing community of music and art lovers,” the paper quoted him as saying.

After Wednesday’s go forward, the pageant’s official Twitter account tweeted a meme of TikTok star Khaby Lame: “Just don’t come naked.”

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