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Uganda will develop with or without loans, Museveni tells World Bank

Ugandan President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni has accused the World Bank and other actors of underestimating Africans.

This coming after the World Banks statement suspending funding to the country because of the anti-gay law passed in Uganda.

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The Bank said, no new public financing to Uganda will be presented to the World Bank Board of Executive Directors until the efficacy of the additional measures had been tested.

According to the statement the World Bank noted that the law contradicts its core values.

“Uganda’s Anti-Homosexuality Act fundamentally contradicts the World Bank Group’s values. We believe our vision to eradicate poverty on a livable planet can only succeed if it includes everyone irrespective of race, gender, or sexuality. This law undermines those efforts. Inclusion and non-discrimination sit at the heart of our work around the world.” Read the statement.

Further the Bank said that immediately after the law was enacted, the World Bank deployed a team to Uganda to review its portfolio in the context of the new legislation.

That review the Bank said determined additional measures were necessary to ensure projects are implemented in alignment with its environmental and social standards.

“Our goal is to protect sexual and gender minorities from discrimination and exclusion in the projects we finance. These measures are currently under discussion with the authorities.” The statement read.

President Museveni on his twitter handle explained that on Wednesday night, an official from the World Bank rang him to alert him about the statement from that Bank regarding the suspension of any new requests from Uganda for loans.

While lamenting the move the president said: “It is unfortunate that the World Bank and other actors dare to want to coerce us into abandoning our faith, culture, principles and sovereignty, using money. They really underestimate all Africans.”

Adding that: “I want to inform everybody, starting with Ugandans, that Uganda will develop with or without loans.”

Homosexual acts were already illegal in Uganda, but anyone now convicted faces life imprisonment under the new law which was enacted in May.

The World Bank said it was committed to helping all Ugandans without exception.

“The World Bank Group has a longstanding and productive relationship with Uganda; and we remain committed to helping all Ugandans without exception escape poverty, access vital services, and improve their lives.” World Bank said.

Uganda dismissed the move by the World Bank as unjust and hypocritical.

The Anti-Homosexuality law imposes the death penalty for so-called aggravated cases, which include having gay sex with someone below the age of 18 or where someone is infected with a life-long illness including HIV.

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