A Ugandan judge on Monday ruled in support of a petition to stop media companies from outing citizens in the nation, where anti-gay sentiment runs rampant and allegations on sexual orientation often result in violence.
High court judge Vincent Musoke-Kibuuke ruled that publishing the identities of people perceived to be gay or lesbian violated Ugandans’ constitutional right to privacy, according to Agence France-Presse (AFP).
The ruling resulted from a case against the anti-gay Ugandan tabloid Rolling Stone (of no relation to the U.S. music magazine of the same name), which in October published the names, pictures and addresses of people it claimed were gay, using the frontpage headline, “Hang Them.”
The judge granted a permanent injunction against Rolling Stone from publishing these names,” said John Francis Onyango, who represented three LGBT equality advocates from a group called Sexual Minorities Uganda. “But the ruling went beyond these applicants and extended to all media.”
The AFP wrote that Musoke-Kibuuke “also ruled the petitioners’ lives were threatened since the story exposed them to potential attacks from vigilantes, Onyango said. The petitioners were awarded 1.5 million Uganda shillings (about 650 dollars or 500 euros) and Rolling Stone was ordered to pay all legal fees incurred by SMUG.”