Anti-gay Ugandan Foreign Minister rejects criticism of his UN appointment

Illustrated rainbow pride flag on a white background.

Ugandan Foreign Minister Sam Kutesa has rejected criticism of his appointment to become the next president of the United Nations General Assembly.

Human rights campaigner Peter Tatchell and New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand criticised the decision because of Mr Kutesa’s comments about homosexuality and Uganda’s support for anti-gay legislation.

Mr Kutesa previously claimed that the majority of Africans “abhor” homosexuality.

Speaking in Kampala on Monday, Mr Kutesa rejected the criticism of his appointment.

He also faces allegations of government corruption. “I don’t believe that anybody should be blocking my presidency on those lines …I urge the protagonists not to squabble. The issues they are raising have no basis,” he said.

Mr Tatchell yesterday called for the appointment to be blocked. He said: “David Cameron, William Hague and governments worldwide should be lobbying the UN to block Kutesa’s appointment on the grounds that his political record is inconsistent with UN principles.”

Despite the protests, Mr Kutesa is due to become president of the UN General Assembly on 11 June .

A Ugandan law further criminalising same-sex sexual activity, allowing repeat offenders to be sentenced to 14 years in prison, was given presidential approval in February.