Ethics and Integrity Minister Father Simon Lokodo says the anti-pornography Act will mend gaps where insidious enticements, misleading behavior and poisoning character of persons has been perpetrated. Lokodo announced today that President Yoweri Museveni early this month signed into law the Anti-Pornography Bill 2011, which was passed by parliament in December last year.
Lokodo announced today that President Yoweri Museveni had signed into law the Anti-Pornography Bill 2011, which was passed by parliament in December last year. Under the new law pornography is defined as any representation through publication, exhibition, cinematography, indecent show, information technology or by whatever means, of a person engaged in real or stimulated explicit sexual activities or any representation of the sexual parts of a person for primarily sexual excitement.
Father Lokodo cites people who practice prostitution such as those who stand along Speke Road in Kampala saying they will be apprehended.
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Section 13 of the Act prohibits pornography in all its forms. A person shall not produce, traffic, publish, broadcast, procure, import, export or abet any form of pornography. Any person who commits the offence is liable on conviction to a fine of 10 million shillings or imprisonment not exceeding ten years or both.
The Ethics Minister states that pornography is an insidious social problem that has unfortunately engulfed Uganda not only in the urban population, but in the remote areas of the country and continues to hurt the future of every community.
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He also warned media houses which spare time in their broadcasting and throw in pornographic materials on the screen, saying these will be shut down.
When the Bill was being discussed there were questions raised on how short or long a woman’s skirt or dress should be. Father Lokodo clarifies stating that one should dress up to promote their dignity and not excite men who might be tempted to rape them.
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Section 14 of the Act prohibits child pornography where perpetrators participate in the production of, traffic, publish, broadcast, import, export or in any way abet pornography depicting images of children. Child pornography is punishable by a fine of 15 million shillings or imprisonment not exceeding 15 years or both.
Offences under the law may be committed by an individual or a body corporate which is liable to double the fine for an individual who commits the offence.
Minister Lokodo says the government has adopted a policy of zero tolerance to pornography and all legal, economic, political and constitutional loopholes that would open a window for pornography must be plugged.
Internet Service Providers who upload or download pornography are liable to imprisonment of five years and a fine of 10 million shillings. Court may order the destruction of pornographic materials and objects and suspension of business of an Internet service provider or proprietor of a place of leisure or entertainment upon conviction of a subsequent offence under the law.
However, there are exceptions to the law, when it is related to education and medical purposes but done in closed doors, cultural practices meant to expose the cultural beauty of the community and in the sports beach activities.