Uganda has now killed the first LGBTI refugee after the Parliament passed the anti-homosexual bill. We should urgently kill the refugee business in Uganda which is brandished in order to justify human rights abuses.
Wasso Amoureux who was assassinated recently in Kyaka2 Refugee Camps in Uganda
Uganda continues to brandish her statistics of refugees as a weapon to silence the international community in order to continue with massive violations of human rights, oppress the opposition, close offices of various human rights organizations and silence the media among others. Yet in actual sense there are better ways to handle refugee issues in Uganda by encouraging these refugees to return back to their countries of origin and with that Uganda will not have what to utilize in order to justice dictatorship, it is even impossible to protect refugees in such an oppressive regime.
In order to show the community how serious Uganda is on the issue of her war against LGBTI, Uganda has now killed her first victim who was a Congolese refugee in Kyaka2 Refugee Camps, in Kyenjojo District.
Known as Wasso Amoureux from Bukavu, South Kivu in the Democratic Republic of Congo where he left in order to seek protection in Uganda, Amoureux found his death in the very hands of those who supposed to protect him. As member of the refugee LGBTI Community in Kyaka2, where he played a big role in the Angel Group, Amoureux was assassinated on the night of Friday April 7th, 2023. In the morning of Saturday, the neighbors were choked to find Amoureux hanged on a small rope in his house, and his body bleeding. Refugees in the camps believe that Amoureux was killed from somewhere and then brought in his house at night. Refugees in Kyaka2 Camps suspect highly that this was done by warlords from M23 Terrorist groups who are now again visible and active in various refugee camps in Uganda operating alongside the Uganda Security Services.
Uganda targets the weak and the defenseless refugees in order to send a message first the refugee community and then to the world, by targeting LGBTI members in the Camps, Uganda intends to firstly attack them at the community level, and by targeting Congolese LGBTI Uganda knew Congolese refugees are currently in a very weak situation, they cannot leave the camp because all the roads are blocked, they don’t have a strong government that may engage Uganda, and the camps will not be easily accessible to the Media. The time was also well calculated, this happened during the climax of the Holy Week of Easter where many people were now turned towards Easter in order to ensure that information does not move so much, but also at a period when President Museveni is waiting to sign the Anti-homosexual bill.
The Police was called in the morning for investigations, they came but did no investigations and went back. We contacted the OC who led the Investigation Team but she claimed that the allegations of the death of this young man were not true, unfortunately she did not give us more information about what was true according to her. We also connected the Commissioner for Refugees in the Office of the Prime Minister who also indicated that he does know anything about it despite the whole machinery of services he has in place in order to brief him. We contacted the Deputy Camps Commandant who is in charge of the security but he did not say anything, he only said OKAY to our questions.
We are so much concerned with the security of the refugee LGBTI Community in Kyaka2 Camps, in Kampala and in the whole Uganda, so far some among them are now being targeted as the ones who have spread the information and are facing intimidations by Camps Authorities. Many are living in fear. This one told us “here I’m hiding and I do not stay in the camps anymore, I keep hiding in different places outside the camps where few people know me, as one among the leaders of the LGBTI group I’m getting so many phone calls from the camp authorities threatening me and wanting to know where I am. I’m wondering how UNHCR protects refugees who are at risk”.
Currently the Democratic Republic of Congo is involved in two military operations with Uganda, one is North Kivu and Ituri Provinces against the ADF Terrorist group and the second one is based in North Kivu Province as part of Eastern African Community Forces against the Terrorists of M23, this may give Uganda enough time and opportunity to target the Congolese LGBTI because nothing much the DRC will do. At the same time it is almost impossible for Congolese refugees to leave Uganda currently, actually many are now just hostages. Uganda deployed several security services on various roads to stop any movement of refugees towards Congo, some who have tried to escape have been arrested and detained in prisons and this has scared many who would like to leave Uganda. At the same time Uganda continues to sing around the world how it is a Paradise for refugees, which is not true.
We call upon Uganda to diligently embark on serious investigations in order to arrest and prosecute the perpetrators of this killing, and ensure that the family of the victim gets the necessary compensations and true justice,
We call Uganda to open all roads and give refugees freedom to leave Uganda or to stay,
We call upon Uganda to stop killing refugee sexual minorities and engage with UNHCR to transfer them in another country,
We call upon the United Nations, the Donor Community, and the Development who support refugee programmes in Uganda, to stop this support to Uganda and make priority the voluntary repatriation and resettlement of refugees, as for example Congolese refugees in Uganda can leave much better in Internally Displaced Camps in DRCongo than in refugee camps in Uganda.
We highly regret the incapacity of UNHCR Uganda to ensure the protection of key refugees at high risks mainly Vocal Refugee Leaders, Refugee Community Leaders, Refugee Human Rights Defenders, and influential Refugee Sexual Minority Groups, this reduces to vain the claim of UNHCR to protect refugees and this institution becomes useless,
Kulihoshi Musikami Pecos
Refugee Programme Office,
The Collective of Youth Organizations for Solidarity in DRCongo known as COJESKI-DRC, Coordination of North Kivu.