NAIROBI: On Friday, hundreds of people protested against the LGBTQ community in Nairobi, the capital of Kenya, in a move that rights organizations deemed” dangerous.”
The protest came after a Supreme Court ruling last month that enraged conservatives and stoked anti-gay sentiment by allowing an advocacy group for gay rights to register as an independent entity.
After Friday prayers at a nearby mosque, the demonstrators, supported by religious organizations, marched to Nairobi’s Supreme Court and demanded the resignation of three case judges.
Some people carried placards with the words” LGBTQ Agenda must fail ,”” LGBTQ is not African ,” and” A walk for upholding family values” written on them.
In Kenya, homosexuality is strongly stigmatized, and under colonial law, having gay sex is still illegal with a maximum sentence of 14 years in prison.
Gay activists claim that the legislation violates their privacy and dignity, encourages discrimination, and prevents them from accessing healthcare and justice, despite the fact that convictions under the law are uncommon.
Independent rights organization Kenya Human Rights Commission( KHRC ) stated that the” dangerous” protest on Friday was the culmination of a” hateful campaign” that began last month in Mombasa, an Indian Ocean port city.
Because previous street actions put this group in danger, KHRC said in a statement,” This hate campaign is now coming to the capital, and we know this will affect LGBTQ people’s lives.”
We” take this opportunity to categorically denounce all previous and ongoing nefarious acts that continue to violate the rights to life, security, and dignity” of this community.
A draft bill calling for the criminalization of homosexual relations with harsh penalties, including a 50-year prison sentence, will be supported by protest organizers as they marched to parliament.
Although the opposition legislator’s bill has not yet been discussed in the house, it closely resembles the harsh anti-gay legislation that Uganda passed earlier this year.
The Ugandan law, which is regarded as one of the strictest of its kind in the world, includes provisions for consensual same-sex relationships lasting up to life in prison as well as making” aggravated homosexuality” a potentially capital offense.
Many East African nations, which have a history of discrimination against gays and are frequently encouraged by traditional Muslims and Christians, forbid homosexuality.
Mauritius, an island in the Indian Ocean, defied that trend on Wednesday by repealing a law prohibiting gay sex from the British colonial era.