• Sweden edition
 
Swedish minister meets Ugandan gay activists
Swedish Finance Minister Anders Borg. File photo: TT

Swedish minister meets Ugandan gay activists

Published: 25 Feb 2014 10:14 GMT+01:00
Updated: 25 Feb 2014 10:14 GMT+01:00

When Anders Borg arrived in Uganda on Monday, he travelled almost straight away to meet with activists working for the rights of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community. The country just passed a law that makes homosexuality punishable with life in prison. 

"We met a number of people who work with LGBT rights," Borg told the TT news agency. "It's a relationship that Sweden has had for a long time. Before I left, I met (Swedish LGBT lobbyists) RFSL to hear their view on the matter." 

Sweden gives bilateral aid to Uganda. About 70 million kronor ($10 million) of the 250-million annual aid budget goes directly to the Ugandan state, which in turn uses the funds for research, including support for women's sexual and reproductive health. Nonetheless, Uganda's official stance on homosexuality could make Sweden question the nature of the aid, Borg said.

"There will be questions about us having government-to-government aid," Borg said. "We have to, in our aid strategy, ponder how we can remain active but still in a clear way point out that this is unacceptable legislation."

Sweden's stance on the rights of gays and lesbian has come up against Ugandan attitudes to homosexuality before. In March last year, the Swedish migration authorities called off a deportation order for a Ugandan man engaged to be married to a compatriot with Swedish residence. The couple, who went on to wed in a Swedish church, made headlines in Sweden not least because a government minister, Birgitta Ohlsson, attended the church ceremony.

Jimmy Sserwadda told The Local that he and his husband Lawrence Kaala were afraid Kaala would be harassed or even lose his life if he had to return to Uganda. Sserwadda also said they believed themselves to be the first Ugandan same-sex couple to wed legally. 

In Uganda this week, Borg also took the opportunity to underline that long-term trade and investment between East Africa and Sweden was on the agenda, but said he regretted that recent law changes overshadowed those important talks.

"It's a paradox that one of the reasons for my visit is to change how we view Africa, and that makes it very sad that you end up in a discussion about legislation that must be regarded as a gross violation of human rights," Borg said.

The finance minister, the first foreign government member to visit the country after the law change, will meet both his Ugandan counterpart and the prime minister.

"Of course these questions will come up," Borg said. "I'm actually here to discuss the economy and growth potential, but it is regrettable overshadowed by this decision." 

TT/The Local/at (news@thelocal.se)

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
BREAKING
Gas leak leaves Sony staff in Sweden hospital

Gas leak leaves Sony staff in Sweden hospital

BREAKING: An Ozone gas leak at Sony Mobile's offices in Lund has put eight people in hospital, with nine others needing to be checked by doctors. READ  

BREAKING
Social Democrats get permission to govern
Stefan Löfven is set to become Prime Minister. Photo: TT

Social Democrats get permission to govern

BREAKING: Sweden's parliamentary speaker has given Social Democrat leader Stefan Löfven the all-clear to form a government. READ  

Vote quirk gives Sweden Democrats extra seats
Sweden Democrat leader Jimmie Åkesson celebrates his party's election success. Photo: Lars Pehrson/SvD/TT

Vote quirk gives Sweden Democrats extra seats

The Sweden Democrats, who became the third largest party in Sunday's election, have learned they will get two more seats than expected due to a quirk in the country's election system. READ  

Ericsson to axe modems and cut jobs
Ericsson CEO Hans Vestberg, pictured here presenting the comapny's quarterly report in July. Photo: Annika af Klercker/TT

Ericsson to axe modems and cut jobs

Swedish telecom giant Ericsson has confirmed it will cut jobs in Sweden and abroad after the company announced on Thursday morning it would stop developing modems. READ  

Elections 2014
Centre party laughs off Löfven's advances
Annie Lööf speaks after her meeting with parliament's speaker on Wednesday. Photo: Fredrik Persson/TT

Centre party laughs off Löfven's advances

UPDATED: Centre Party leader Annie Lööf has reiterated her reluctance to cooperate across bloc lines with Social Democrat leader Stefan Löfven, as he renews his attempts to form a fresh government. READ  

Elections 2014
Sweden Democrats want prized speaker job
Sweden Democrat party secretary Björn Söder celebrates Sunday's election result. Photo: Anders Wiklund/TT

Sweden Democrats want prized speaker job

UPDATED: As Sweden’s third largest party, the Sweden Democrats "assume" they will be given one of a handful of prestigious parliamentary speaker jobs, party secretary Björn Söder tells The Local. READ  

National
Teens in intensive care after school 'initiation'
Photo: Peder Skrivares school

Teens in intensive care after school 'initiation'

School inspectors are investigating after an initiation ceremony at a high school in Varberg in south west Sweden left four girls in hospital. READ  

National
Pirate Bay Swede 'mistreated' in jail
Peter Sunde. Photo: TT

Pirate Bay Swede 'mistreated' in jail

The brother of Pirate Bay co-founder Peter Sunde has questioned the conditions of his brother's Swedish jail, slamming both the institution and the guards. READ  

Elections 2014
Fresh election fears in divided Sweden
Sweden Democrat leader Jimmie Åkesson may not support a Social Democrat budget. Photo: TT

Fresh election fears in divided Sweden

UPDATED: The leaders of Sweden's main political parties have been called to parliament as speculation grows that the Sweden Democrats could hold the key to new elections. READ  

Presented by Stockholm Business Region
Introducing... the Stockholm collection
Photo: Imagebank Sweden

Introducing... the Stockholm collection

Moving to Stockholm, or just dreaming about it? Either way, this is your ultimate guide: for housing, finances, insurance, business, and so much more. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Society
What's on in Sweden
Politics
How Sweden Democrats went mainstream
Politics
Scandinavia and Scotland: closer links?
Gallery
Property of the week - Eskilstuna
Sponsored Article
How to start a business in Stockholm
Blog updates

17 September

Deep election analysis (Blogweiser) »

"You think you’re bad? Well I’m American. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NFbomLID0vU Deep deep analysis on Swedish election results. Vlog post: https://t.co/tjQgfa5Yie #svpol #val2014 #politics pic.twitter.com/oEK5ADFT8L — Joel Sherwood (@joeldsherwood) September 17, 2014 " READ »

 

15 September

Liten, litet, små & lilla (The Swedish Teacher) »

"Hej igen! Have you ever been confused about when to use “liten”, “litet”, “små” and “lilla”? Today I’m going to sort out how use the adjective “liten” (small) and the different forms of it. Liten or litet? “Liten” is the form we will use when referring to a noun with the gender “en”. For example: Min pappa har en..." READ »

 
 
 
Society
How I became a surf blogger when I moved to Sweden
Gallery
People-watching: September 13th
Society
Why is Stockholm's Södermalm so cool?
Gallery
People-watching: September 11th
Gallery
People-watching: September 13th
Politics
Five possible election outcomes
Politics
Sweden elections: How do they work?
Politics
Sweden elections: Who's who?
Lifestyle
What's on in Sweden
Gallery
Property of the week - Hornstull, Stockholm
Analysis
Five differences between the UK and Sweden
Welshman Jonny Luck is now a chef in Sweden
Society
How I opened my own restaurant in Sweden's Malmö
Sponsored Article
Stockholm tech fest: relive the magic
Gallery
People-watching September 8th
Photo: TT
Politics
Feminists fight for first seats
Politics
Immigration cut push from Sweden Democrats
Sheryl Sandberg says women have "low expectations"
Tech
Facebook exec talks women's limits in Swedish business
Politics
Left Party calls for justice and equality
Politics
Green Party wants 'better world' for kids
Lifestyle
The five best Swedish songs of the month
Sponsored Article
Introducing… Insurance in Stockholm
Sponsored Article
Graduates: Insure your income in Sweden with AEA
Sponsored Article
Introducing...Your finances in Stockholm
Sponsored Article
Introducing...Housing in Stockholm
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

863
jobs available
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions is an innovative business company which provides valuable assistance with the Swedish Authorities, Swedish language practice and general communications. Call 073-100 47 81 or visit:
www.swedishdowntown.com
PSD Media
PSD Media is marketing company that offers innovative solutions for online retailers. We provide modern solutions that help increase traffic and raise conversion. Visit our site at:
http://psdmedia.se
If you want to drink, that’s your business.
If you want to stop, we can help.

Learn more about English-language Alcoholics Anonymous in Sweden. No dues. No fees. Confidentiality assured.
AA-EUROPE.ORG/SWEDEN