Outcry as Ugandan paper names ‘top homosexuals’ – “sick and twisted journalism at work”

Gay Ugandans have faced a fortnight of attacks and intimidation, say human rights campaigners, after a local newspaper published a list of the country’s “top 100 homosexuals”. As well as naming gay Ugandans – complete with photographs and addresses – Rolling Stone newspaper also claimed that a deadly disease was attacking homosexuals in Uganda, and said that gays were recruiting one million children by raiding schools. Activists say a number of Ugandans have been attacked since the Rolling Stone newspaper published the front-page story on 9 October under a banner that read, “Hang Them”. After the article hit the streets, the government’s Media Council ordered the newspaper to stop publishing – not because of the content, but rather as the newspaper had not registered with the administration. After it completes the paperwork, Rolling Stone will be free to publish again. The newspaper’s managing editor, Giles Muhame, maintains that the article was in the public interest. Although Ugandan Rolling Stone published its first issue only in August, it is already locked in competition with Red Pepper, another garish local tabloid. Rolling Stone’s print run is about 2,000 copies, but 10 or more people often read a single newspaper in Uganda.                                                                    



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