Gay Ugandans appeal to Pope Francis to preach acceptance

Illustrated rainbow pride flag on a white background.

Gay activists in Uganda are appealing to Pope Francis, hoping he will preach acceptance during a visit to the country.

Meanwhile, however, Catholic leaders in Uganda have expressed that they hope he will ignore the issue during the visit.

Homosexuality remains an extremely contentious issue in Uganda, and the LGBT community is often persecuted.

Homosexuality is illegal, and attacks on gay people have seen many flee the country or go into hiding, to avoid further persecution.

“I see this particular pope as more progressive but I wouldn’t call him an ally like [US President] Obama,” Frank Mugisha, a prominent LGBT activist told the Independent.

“I would like to see his position very clearly because what he said came as a by-the-way when he said he can’t judge.”

Mugisha has also attacked the “idealogical colonisation” of countries in the developing world, where wealthy nations have placed conditions on aid money on the progression of human rights.

Countries like Sweden and Norway cut their aid budgets for Uganda, when an anti-gay bill was passed in the country last year.

A technicality meant the law, which included the punishment of some gay sex crimes by death, was thrown out.