Kenyan MP says gays as bad as terrorists

2014-03-27 06:55
(Ben Curtis, AP)

(Ben Curtis, AP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Nairobi - Homosexuality in Kenya is as bad a problem as terrorism, the ruling party's parliamentary leader said on Wednesday, but argued against stepping up legal sanctions on the grounds that existing laws were tough enough.

Aden Duale, the majority leader from President Uhuru Kenyatta's ruling Jubilee coalition, was responding to a group of MPs demanding tougher laws.

"Can't we just be brave enough, seeing that we are a sovereign state, and outlaw gayism and lesbianism, the way Uganda has done?" legislator Alois Lentoimaga said.

Uganda has voted for life imprisonment for some homosexual acts, prompting some international donors to suspend aid.

Duale, who speaks on behalf of the Kenyan government in the assembly, said: "We need to go on and address this issue the way we want to address terrorism ...

"It's as serious as terrorism. It's as serious as any other social evil," Duale said, referring to a spate of attacks by al Qaeda-linked Somali Islamist militants carried out in retaliation for Kenya's intervention in neighbouring Somalia.

But he said the Kenyan constitution and the penal code already had sufficient anti-gay provisions, denying the government was reluctant to tighten such laws for fear of losing international aid.

Duale said 595 cases of homosexuality had been investigated in Kenya since 2010, when a new constitution was adopted, and courts had convicted or acquitted the accused, while police had found no organisations openly championing homosexuality in violation of the law.

Penal code

"We do not need to go the Uganda way, we have the constitution and the penal code to deal with homosexuality, and so this debate is finished, we will not be enacting any new tougher laws," Duale told Reuters later.

Homosexuality is broadly taboo in Africa and illegal in 37 countries. Fear of violence, imprisonment and loss of jobs means few gays in Africa are open about their sexuality.

Kenya's penal code says any person "who has carnal knowledge of any person against the order of nature" is guilty of a felony and can be jailed for 14 years.

Anti-gay groups have emerged in Kenya after Nigeria and Uganda toughened up laws against homosexuals.

One of these groups, The Save Our Men Initiative, has said it is launching a "Zuia Sodom Kabisa" campaign, meaning "prevent Sodom completely" in Swahili, to "save the family, save youth, save Kenya".

Nigeria has outlawed same-sex relationships. Gambia's President Yahya Jammeh has said homosexuals are "vermin" and must be fought like malaria-causing mosquitoes.

Read more on:    kenya  |  east africa  |  gay rights
NEXT ON NEWS24X
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
60 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
SPONSORED CONTENT
When is a mountain more than just a mountain? 2014-12-18 07:26

When it’s an adventure! A group of Old Mutual employees found out how much is enough courage, endurance and camaraderie to take on Africa's highest peak.

/News
 

Joburg hot spots for cocktails, craft beer, tapas and wine!

It’s the season to be jolly – so we’ve rounded up some new Joburg hot spots!

 
 

I love summer.24

Summer Survey!
Great ideas for the best summer sandwiches!
Christmas lingerie to make this festive season the best one ever!
13 things you might not know about Disneyland

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

2DAYS ONLY – 30% off Appliances

Coffee makers, blenders, fans, juicers and more. T&Cs apply. Shop now!

2 DAYS ONLY – 40% off books

Get 40% off when you buy 2 books. For two days only! T&Cs apply. Buy now!

Up to 50% off on outdoor gear

Save on chairs, blankets, cooler bags, umbrellas and more. Shop now!

Save on Samsung

Cameras, mobile phones, TVs, Tablets and more. While stocks last. Shop now!

Grand Theft Auto 5

Now available on PS4, Xbox One and PC from R649. Buy now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

At last you are able to see the light. You are able to break through obstacles in an innovative and original way. Visualisation is...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.