In Uganda, the anti-pornography law that banned miniskirts has been repealed

The Ugandan Constitutional Court on Tuesday (August 17th) repealed the law against pornography in force in the country since 2014, several articles of which, such as the ban on wearing the miniskirt, were denounced by feminist organizations and civil society in general.

According to the judgment published on Monday and consulted on Tuesday by Agence France-Presse (AFP), the law is declared “Incompatible or contrary with the Constitution”. ” The articles (…) of the anti-pornography law are declared null and void “Judge Frederick Egonda-Ntende concludes in his ruling, which also removes the powers of a nine-member law enforcement committee.

Government lawyer Imelda Adong declined to comment immediately, telling AFP that the authorities “Were studying the decision”. The law of February 2014 considered as pornographic behaviors and activities as banal as the wearing of short skirts or the texts of songs considered too daring.

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An expanding anti-liberal movement

Women’s rights groups have campaigned in recent years for the repeal of this text, dubbed “Anti-miniskirt law”, denouncing the harassment carried out against women wearing clothes considered indecent. “It was a tough fight and we are grateful that those who believe in women’s rights won”, congratulated AFP Lillian Drabo, who was among the nine organizations and private individuals petitioners who challenged the law in court.

“The law revealed the dangers women face in what is considered the modern world”, she added. According to its critics, this law was indicative of a growing anti-liberal movement in Uganda, which also inspired a very repressive law against homosexuality, also promulgated in February 2014. In 2014, the singer Jemimah Kansiime, of her name of “Panadol wa Basajja” scene, had spent five weeks in prison after the release of a suggestive clip where she appeared in thong and wide cleavage, lasciviously soaping her buttocks. According to the anti-pornography law, she faced ten years in prison.

A strong supporter of this law, the Minister of Ethics and Integrity, Simon Lokodo, had in 2016 seized in a prestigious private school copies of a British novel which, according to him, exposed students to the sexuality of way too early.

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The World with AFP