On 27th October 2022, the Bishop of Southwark spoke in a debate marking the 50th Anniversary of the expulsion of Asians from Uganda, reflecting on the government response at the time and the treatment of refugees today:
The Lord Bishop of Southwark: My Lords, I too congratulate the noble Lord, Lord Popat, on securing this debate, marking as it does a significant and tragic episode in the history of Uganda, an important event in the history of the United Kingdom and an enduring part of the lived experience of thousands of our fellow citizens, as the noble Lord so eloquently demonstrated.
Many of us are old enough to remember the news footage, the feeling of injustice, the sense of a world out of kilter. After Idi Amin made the fateful speech on 4 August 1972, the then Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Michael Ramsey, denounced what he called the “dreadful racialist policy” in a BBC broadcast. He was to make available a cottage in the grounds of Lambeth Palace to a displaced family. But compared with the dispossession and sometimes violence shown to those to whom Uganda was home, our discomfort was small indeed. It is a testimony to Ugandan Asians what they achieved in the years that followed. I am glad to see that my fellow bishop, the noble and right reverend Lord, Lord Sentamu, the former Archbishop of York, spoke in this debate. We have all been edified by his wisdom and direct experience.
I want simply to look over some of the unintended consequences of those years and the then Government’s response. It was the Colonial Office’s intention in the late 1950s that the territories of east Africa should realise independence in the late 1960s and early 1970s. The watershed speech of Mr Harold Macmillan, known as “Winds of Change”, on 3 February 1960 signalled a major change of policy and pace. Tanganyika gained independence in 1961, and Uganda and Kenya each in the next two years.
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On 18th March 2020 the Second Church Estates Commissioner, Andrew Selous MP, answered seven written questions from Jim Shannon MP, on carbon reduction, cashless donations, South Sudan, Uganda, lead theft and graveyard records:
Jim Shannon (Strangford): 29873 To ask the right hon. Member for South West Bedfordshire, representing the Church Commissioners, what steps the Church of England is taking to use its investments to support business transitioning to a low carbon economy.
Andrew Selous: As responsible investors and members of the UN-convened Net Zero Asset Owner Alliance, the Church Commissioners regard climate change as a vital issue and have pledged to transition their investment to a net-zero greenhouse gas emissions portfolio by 2050. They will set their first interim emissions reduction target as members of the Net Zero Asset Owner Alliance in 2020 and will work with their public equities managers to achieve it. Continue reading “Church Commissioners’ written answers: carbon reduction, cashless donations, South Sudan, Uganda, lead theft, graveyard records”
On 3rd April 2019 the Bishop of Durham, Rt Revd Paul Butler, received a written answer to a question on tensions between Rwanda and Uganda.
The Lord Bishop of Durham: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the rising tensions between Rwanda and Uganda; and what steps they have taken to reduce tensions.
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On 23rd July 2014, Lord Lexden asked Her Majesty’s Government what action they propose to take over the abuse of the human rights of LGBT people in Uganda as a result of the passing of the Anti-Homosexuality Act there. The Bishop of Coventry, the Rt Revd Christopher Cocksworth, asked a supplementary question:
The Lord Bishop of Coventry:
My Lords, I apologise to the Minister for my enthusiasm. I have not asked a question in this House before so I wanted to get on with it. The Minister will be aware that the most reverend Primates the Archbishop of Canterbury and the Archbishop of York wrote to the President of Uganda in January to reiterate a statement made by all the Primates of the Anglican Communion, in which they said:
“The victimisation or diminishment of human beings whose affections happen to be ordered towards people of the same sex is anathema to us”.
In that spirit, do the Government intend to provide asylum to those who are fleeing the worrying consequences of this law which enshrines such diminishment?
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Second Church Estates Commissioner, Rt Hon Sir Tony Baldry MP, answered a number of written questions from Pamela Nash MP on the Church of England, Churches and LGBT people.
Church of England
Pamela Nash: To ask the right hon. Member for Banbury, representing the Church Commissioners, what assessment the Church Commissioners have made of recent trends in the proportion of Church of England congregations that are(a) from black and Asian minority ethnic groups, (b) women, (c) disabled people and (d) from low-income groups.
Sir Tony Baldry: The most recent assessment of the proportion of Church of England congregations that are women and from Black and Asian minority ethnic groups was in the 2007 Congregational Diversity Audit. This was the first time such a survey had been conducted, and therefore no trends are yet available. It did not record information on people with disabilities and those from low-income groups.
The 2007 Diversity Audit showed that Black and Black British adults were more likely to belong to Church of England local congregations than their White counterparts. This results in a stronger picture of congregational strength in those dioceses where the presence of Black and Black British adults is high, for example, urban areas. Continue reading “Church Commissioner Rt Hon Sir Tony Baldry MP answers written questions from Pamela Nash MP”