Saturday, February 21, 2009


Or actually the Niwano Peace Prize. Thanks to the Lead, this morning I learned that the Rev. Canon Gideon Byamugisha won this prize, a prize specifically awarded for people of faith. Byamugisha was the first African cleric to announce publicly that he had HIV/AIDS. There's no word about it yet in the New Vision, the Ugandan daily, but you can read the full article here.

What I did find in the New Vision was an article from shortly before I left. I think I wrote about the three gay activists who crashed an HIV/AIDS summit. They were there to say the country needed to address the issues of homosexuality and AIDS. The article ends with this:

Homosexuality is a crime in Uganda, punishable by life imprisonment under the “unnatural offences” in section 140 of the penal code. [The activists were arrested.]

In his presentation during same the plenary session, renowned Ugandan AIDS activist, the Rev. Canon Gideon Byamugisha, said that some governments were using AIDS to control people rather than using people to control the disease.

Byamugisha, representing people living with HIV/AIDS said: “Implementation is in chaos. we seem to have different agenda. To say that you cannot give me treatment because I have sex differently is beside the point. We are in implementation to save lives. Are we going to put conditions on who will survive and who will die?”

I look forward to hearing more about Byamugisha in the news.

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