(Kampala) Ugandan government lawyers have recommended that President Yoweri Museveni “return to Parliament” a controversial repressive anti-LGBT law for “re-examination”, according to a letter seen by AFP on Thursday.

Uganda’s parliament passed a law on March 21 that provides for harsh penalties for people in same-sex relationships. This law has aroused the indignation of many human rights organizations and governments of Western countries.

The president summoned parliamentarians from the ruling party (NRM, National Resistance Movement) on Thursday afternoon to “discuss, among other things (subjects), the Anti-Homosexuality Law 2023”, according to a letter addressed to lawmakers.

According to sources close to the presidency, the head of state could reject the text as it stands and send it back to Parliament.

In another letter dated Thursday and seen by AFP, Deputy Attorney General Kaafuzi Jackson Kargaba informs Speaker of Parliament Anita Among that government lawyers have advised Mr Museveni that the text should “be sent back to Parliament for reconsideration”.

While “the government is not opposed to the law”, however, several provisions are “too broad or vague” and could be challenged “on grounds of unconstitutionality”, Mr. Kargaba points out.

The extent of the new penalties provided for by law is not precisely known. But according to defenders of the homosexual cause, the text provides that anyone engaging in homosexual activities incurs life imprisonment and, in the event of recidivism, the death penalty, in this country of East Africa where the homosexuality was already illegal.

The White House notably warned Uganda of potential economic “consequences” if the law comes into effect.

The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Volker Türk, had called on Mr. Museveni not to enact this “discriminatory text – probably the worst in the world of its kind”.

The European Parliament denounced this text in a resolution on Thursday, warning President Yoweri Museveni against its promulgation.

This bill “violates the Ugandan Constitution, as well as Uganda’s obligations under the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights, and international law”, the parliament said in a statement.

The resolution “deplores President Museveni’s contribution to hateful rhetoric towards ‘LGBT’ people, adding that “EU-Uganda relations will be at risk if the President enacts the bill.”