Author of Uganda’s Anti-Homosexuality Bill, Uganda MP David Bahati, will not be attending the National Prayer Breakfast according to sources with the Fellowship Foundation. On Sunday, Uganda’s Monitor reported that Bahati planned to attend and to speak at the event. However, according to Bob Hunter and others with the Fellowship Foundation, Bahati was invited months ago to come to Washington DC only as a volunteer and not to attend the NPB event. According to these sources, Bahati declined the invitation prior to introducing the Anti-Homosexuality Bill. According to Mr. Hunter, the Monitor article and Bahati’s statements came as a complete surprise to the NPB officials here. However, in the event the article was accurate, the NPB officials and Congressional leaders were taking action to assure that Bahati did not come to any of the meetings.
I have asked David Bahati for comment regarding these reports but he has not returned the email request.
UPDATE: Jan. 19, 2010
I just received this statement from spokesperson for the National Prayer Breakfast, Ambassador Richard Swett. Richard Swett was Ambassador to Denmark from 1998-2001. Prior to that post, he represented the 2nd district of New Hampshire from 1991-1995 as a Democrat.
Ambassador Richard Swett, a longtime associate of the Fellowship Foundation since his days in Congress in the early ‘90s, confirmed the accuracy of Mr. Hunter’s report to Warren Throckmorton. He went on to state, “The National Prayer Breakfast is an organization that builds bridges of understanding between all peoples, religions and beliefs and has never advocated the sentiments expressed in Mr. Bahati’s legislation.”
I appreciate this statement from Ambassador Swett. I think it makes quite clear the current position of the Fellowship regarding the Bahati bill.