David Kato Kisule 7th Annual Memorial.

On the 26th January 2017 Sexual Minorities Uganda and its partners together with close friends and family to the fallen David Kato Kisule gathered at SMUG offices for the 7th annual David Kato Memorial.
David Kato was brutally murdered at his home on 26th January 2011, an occurance that reshaped the journey of Uganda’s LGBTI movement. We had a memorial service during which Pastor Simon Mpanga said “We are here today because someone impacted people’s lives. What will we remember about you?” He asked “Are you thinking about your life away from your sexuality or are you still battling with what’s within that you can’t see what God has planned for you?” He says it is unfortunate that “We have been told that boys don’t cry, that men are not emotional. But that’s a lie being told by people who do not want you to live your truth adding that we live in a time where we can be who we are and even a trans person can become president of Uganda. He urged us to be strong because we are fighting today for the next generation “.”
Bishop Christopher Ssenyonjo one of the first members of the clergy to come out and support LGBTI persons said David Kato left a legacy that all of us in Uganda should celebrate.
Sexual Minorities Uganda Executive Director Dr Frank Mugisha says “Each year around this time we celebrate David Kato through our work, we are constantly reminded of David’s passion to protect and speak up for everyone.”
David Kato’s nephew says on the fateful day his uncle was murdered he felt uneasy all day. He says he tried several times to hide the hammer that ended David’s life but somehow every time he came back home, the hammer would be in sight.
He says David loved advocating for the human rights of LGBTI persons. He commended SMUG for continuing with the work that David Kato left.
Mr Pepe Julian Onziema, Sexual Minorities Uganda Programs Director recounted as thus “ That day I passed out from fatigue and I woke up at about 4:30pm and my phone was ringing off the hook people had sent me messages asking me if I’d heard from David. I had spoken to him earlier and was expecting him to call me back later, turns out that was the last time I spoke to him.” David was a person of urgency he was always on the move and we always wondered when does he sleep? He was always the guy who was running around to bail people out of jail. There’s no one in this community that is like him, he is one of those people that is irreplaceable.”
Described as courageous, brave, kind, loving, generous and developmental by different people who knew him, Kato was a retired teacher at the time of his death and he was openly an LGBTIQ human rights defender working as an advocacy and litigation officer at Sexual Minorities Uganda.

Pepe takes a photo of David’s portrait.

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