Vice President Bukenya Backs Nkoyoyo On Gays

( [email protected] ) Nov 07, 2003 04:12 PM EST

Vice President Gilbert Bukenya has praised Archbishop Mpalanyi Nkoyoyo's stand against homosexuality.

Bukenya yesterday criticised the consecration of the Rev. Canon V. Gene Robinson as bishop of New Hampshire in the United States on Sunday.

Bukenya said he is happy that Nkoyoyo strongly opposed the consecration of Robinson and rejected homosexuality in the church.

He urged the church to come out strongly and correct peoples' morals.

"The evils of development, the evils of industrialisation and this sophisticated civilisation is what you are seeing. We shall fight but the battle is very big," he told journalists at the weekly government media briefing at the Cabinet Library in Kampala.

Robinson is the first openly gay Anglican to be consecrated bishop.

The consecration has drawn the wrath of conservative Anglicans, and threatens to split the 70-million-member worldwide Anglican Communion.

The Church of Uganda denounced the consecration, saying it was cutting ties with the diocese of New Hampshire.

Anglicans in Latin America, Asia and the rest of Africa also came out strongly against the consecration.

Bukenya said yesterday that he supported the Church of Uganda's move.

Said the vice president: "I am a believer in God. God didn't create man to sleep with another man or a woman to sleep with another woman. You people, don't copy these things because they are terrible."

He said he was shocked to see Robinson's partner kiss him after the consecration.

He also condemned nude shows staged in bars and pornography on the Internet.

This was the first time Bukenya was appearing at the government briefing since he was appointed vice president on May 23.

This week's briefing was moved from the Ministry of Information headquarters at Nakasero, the usual venue, to the Cabinet Library at Parliament buildings for the vice president's sake.

Bukenya also supported Mayor Ssebaana Kizito's planned eviction of residents of Naguru and Nakawa housing estates. However, he said the exercise must be done humanely.

"Put a humane eye," he urged.

Kananathan probed

The vice president also said he is investigating Apparels Tri-Star boss V. Kananathan's alleged bad record.

Mr Kananathan is the managing director of Apparels Tri-Star, a company which exports textiles to the United States under the African Growth and Opportunity Act.

Ms Miria Matembe, the former minister of Ethics and Integrity, blew the whistle on Kananathan. She told Parliament on Wednesday that she caused the arrest of Kananathan for criminal acts sometime back.

Apparels Tri- Star has been at the centre of controversy since more than 200 of its female staff went on strike and were promptly fired late last month.

'Keep UPC out'

Bukenya said the opposition Uganda Peoples Congress should be kept out of power for at least 20 more years.

Bukenya said UPC had committed many atrocities and cannot be entrusted with power yet.

"UPC must explain why they killed our people, they must account during their time. Have they changed? I am still worried. They must be kept out of the steering position at least for another 10 to 20 years," he said.