Tanzania bans lube in crackdown on gays

2016-07-23 08:34


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

Dar es Salaam - The Tanzanian government has banned imports and sales of sexual lubricants in its latest move targeting the gay community, officials say.

Health Minister Ummy Mwalimu justified the move on the grounds that the product encourages homosexuality, which is banned in the east African nation.

"It is true that the government has banned the importation and use of the jelly to curb the spread of HIV," the minister told local media on Tuesday.

"It is estimated that 23 percent of men who have sex with men in Tanzania are living with HIV/AIDS," he added.

"I have instructed stakeholders working with gay people to remove the products from the market."

Groups working with the gay community were handing out the lube for free, the minister said.

"The ministry has agreed to work with stakeholders to give the ministry the money they were using to buy and import the lubricants so we could use it to buy beds for the maternity wards."

Gay male sex is punishable by life imprisonment under Tanzanian law, but there is no such ban on lesbian relations.

In practice, there had been no known arrests over homosexuality in recent years.

But the newly appointed regional commissioner for the port city of Dar es Salaam, Paul Makonda, announced a major crackdown against gay people this month, followed by arrests of suspected gays in clubs.

Some people who have been openly gay on the internet stopped posting after Makonda threatened that police would arrest those who follow them on social media.

Read more on:    tanzania  |  east africa  |  gay rights

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


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.


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.