No Country For Gay Men: Pres. Goodluck Jonathan Signs Anti-gay Bill

Nigeria's President Goodluck Jonathan.
Nigeria’s President Goodluck Jonathan.

Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan signed a bill on Monday that criminalizes same-sex relationships, the presidency said, defying pressure from Western governments to respect gay and lesbian rights.

The bill, which contains penalties of up to 14 years in prison and bans gay marriage, same-sex “amorous relationships” and membership of gay rights groups, was passed by the national assembly last May but Jonathan had delayed signing it into law.

Two similar bills have been proposed since 2006 but failed to make it through parliament.

“Yes, Mr President had signed the bill into law, a statement will be issued on it within the week,” presidency spokesman Reuben Abati told Reuters.

As in much of sub-Saharan Africa, anti-gay sentiment and persecution of homosexuals is rife in Nigeria, so the new legislation is likely to be popular. Jonathan is expected to seek re-election in 2015 but is under pressure after several dozen lawmakers and a handful of regional governors defected to the opposition in the past two months.

Under existing Nigerian federal law, sodomy is punishable by jail, but this bill legislates for a much broader crackdown on homosexuals and lesbians, who already live a largely underground existence.

While European countries, most recently France, have moved to offer same-sex couples the same legal rights enjoyed by heterosexuals, many African countries are seeking to tighten laws against homosexuality.

Britain and some other Western countries have threatened to cut aid, a threat that has helped hold back or scupper such legislation in aid-dependent nations like Uganda and Malawi.

Agencies

4 thoughts on “No Country For Gay Men: Pres. Goodluck Jonathan Signs Anti-gay Bill

  1. Well, recently Kadaga quoted Nigeria as one country with opposition to the gaysim perverse, Thank God the president accented to the mass’ will. For the time being we shall the tilted minded will be scared to openly perpetuate their stink.

  2. Promotion of gayism by recruiting, paying for the act and attaching donor money to such obscene way of life amounts to Terrorism. Nigeria is out of this mess thanks to the Nigerian President hope Uganda is Next .

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