By Juliet Lukwago
Despite the stand-off between Kampala and Washington governments, the US is not closing its mission in Uganda, Ambassador to Uganda Scott DeLisi has said.
“As president Obama noted, the US has a valued relationship with Uganda and this remains true, despite the challenges posed by the new law. Our partnership is multi- faceted and complex, and it’s not just about our interactions with the Uganda government on this recent legislation.”
“It is also about our engagement with the people whose lives we touch every day with our development programmes in health and food security.
"I say this in specific reference to some false reports suggesting that the US is about to terminate its engagement with Uganda and that the embassy in Kampala will soon close,” DeLisi said in reference to the recently enacted anti-homosexuality law.
The ambassador was addressing about 50 local entrepreneurs at his residence in Kololo on Monday. The group is due to travel to Illinois, Chicago for a house-ware exhibition organised by Barclay’s Bank.
“You are travelling to Chicago at a time when the relationship between Uganda and US has, in President Obama’s words, become complicated. And some of you may find that Americans you meet have a view of Uganda that is shaped by their very different perspective on the importance of equal protection and non-discrimination under the law.
"My purpose tonight, though, is not to fuel debate on the new anti-homosexuality law. As I am sure you all know, however, the US government in keeping with the high premium it attaches to all human rights, opposes this legislation,” he said.
“We believe it should be repealed to ensure that it does not result in the discrimination of the kind that complicates the implementation of numerous programmes constituting our engagement with Uganda,” he stressed.
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US embassy not closing, says envoy