Ugandan Tourism Officials Claim Gays Are Welcome Despite the Jail the Gays Law

Author: , September 15th, 2014

Uganda - Google MapsUgandan tourism officials have said the African country still welcomes gay tourists despite repeated attempts to pass an anti-gay law. The Ugandan Tourism Board (UTB) recently met with the International Gay & Lesbian Travel Association (IGLTA) to try to restore the country’s reputation among both gay and straight tourists.

John Tanzella, president and CEO of IGLTA, told the SoSoGay website that the board felt Western media had portrayed Uganda in a particularly negative light since the country passed a law that would punish gay sex with life imprisonment in December last year. The law was struck down last month.

Tanzella said, ‘The delegation said that gay people are welcome. They were very concerned about the perception of Uganda in Western Europe and North America, and claimed that the backlash caught them by surprise. No-one thought it would pass. The delegates all pointed out that they have friends and family who are gay.’

By Darren Wee – Full Story at Gay Star News

Image via Google Maps

IGLTA Meets With Uganda Tourism Leaders

Author: , September 11th, 2014

Uganda - Google MapsAt the invitation of the Africa Travel Association, International Gay & Lesbian Travel Association President/CEO John Tanzella and Past Board Chair Tanya Churchmuch met staff from Uganda Tourism and tourism businesses from Uganda’s private sector to discuss the issues surrounding lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender tourism to Uganda.

While many African nations are known for their homophobic policies, Uganda has been on the frontlines since its Parliament passed a particularly virulent anti-gay bill last December, and several Western nations began withdrawing aid amidst the global outcry. The 8 September meeting with IGLTA took place at ATA’s headquarters as part of a U.S. road show for Destination Uganda, just over one month after a Ugandan court struck down the law.

“ATA is pleased to facilitate a meeting between the Uganda Tourism Board and the Uganda private sector and IGLTA to discuss timely issues relating to the promotion and marketing of tourism,” said ATA Executive Director Edward Bergman.

Full Story at Edge Boston

Image via Google Maps

Uganda Tour Cancelled After Anti Gay Bill Signed

Author: , February 26th, 2014

Uganda

Uganda

Many in the tourism industry consider the country of Uganda a jewel, often describing it as “the pearl of Africa.” Wildlife abounds and gorilla tracking is prime. At Oblogdee we warned that notwithstanding the perfection of the safari destination, if the new Anti-Homosexuality Bill became Ugandan law, tour operators would likely start to withdraw business and discontinue to support the Country’s thriving tourist trade. Our prediction was well founded, as before the ink on President Yoweri Museveni’s odious Bill could dry, one world class and renowned tour operator cancelled its Uganda Great Apes safari and condemned the draconian law.

Immediately upon hearing about President Musveni’s assent to The Anti-Homosexuality Bill today, Jody Cole, renowned adventurer, philanthropist and human rights advocate, and founder of Wild Rainbow African Safaris, which specializes in guided safaris to East and Southern Africa, issued a statement to OBLOGDEE expressing disappointment in the Anti-Homosexuality Bill, while noting how the new legislation makes it almost impossible for tour operators to guarantee the safety of guests in Uganda:-

“We (Wild Rainbow African Safaris) are very troubled by the Ugandan Parliament’s passage of its notorious Anti-Homosexuality Bill. This bill is an affront on human rights as well as on the respect and dignity of LGBT Ugandans and their allies. As great lovers and supporters of the wildlife, culture and spirit of Africa, we are very disappointed and saddened by the passage and signing of this draconian law. While our trips are first and foremost about seeing and experiencing the amazing wildlife of Africa, we must reconsider whether we can go forward with future trips to Uganda in light of these latest developments. The safety and comfort of our guests is our number one priority, and we must be able to ensure the safety and comfort of all our guests regardless of sexual orientation.”

Authored By Melanie Nathan – See the Full Story at O-blog-dee-o-blog-da

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Gay Travel in the World’s Most Homophobic Place

Author: , August 1st, 2013

Clark HaridngOut writer and adventurer Clark Harding has always wanted to see gorillas in the mist, so a few years back he decided to visit the world’s best place for primate sighting: Uganda. What he didn’t realize until right before he departed was the African nation was becoming engulfed in antigay hysteria, much of it stoked by American evangelical leaders; the parliament has long considered legislation that could include a death sentence for some homosexual acts. Clark recalls his African adventure below and tells us how he managed to realize his dreams and stay safe.

November 2009

“Did you hear the news?” My friend Kristin’s voice was aflutter. I put my vintage iPhone 3G on speaker and closed my office door.

“War?” I asked nervously sitting back at my desk.

“Worse,” she responded.

“Genocide?” I bit my nails.

“Wrong country dumbass,” She snarked. “Uganda just announced its plans to pass a bill…executing homosexuals.”

“Well that’s clever,” I said after a moment, “Seeing as we’re going there, like, tomorrow.”

“Should we cancel?” Kristin asked.

“Hell no,” I stated nobly. “Nothing will stop me from having my Sigourney moment.”

Read the rest of this electrifying article by Clark Harding at the Out Traveler

Click here for gay travel resources.