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Kenya: Prime Minister Orders Crackdown on Homosexuals

Kenyan Prime Minister Raila Odinga has ordered the arrest of all gays and lesbians in Kenya. Speaking at his constituency in Langa'ta, Mr. Odinga said that legal and appropriate action will be held against gays and lesbians as the country will not condone the behavior. Capital FM quotes him saying, “We will not tolerate such behaviours in the country. The constitution is very clear on this issue and men or women found engaging in homosexuality will not be spared.”

Bloggers have expressed outrage and dismay towards the Prime Minister's attitude towards gays and lesbians.  Gay Nairobi Man explains how impossible it will be to arrest gays under the new constitution and that the Kenyan penal code does not say anything against lesbianism:

Secondly, there is no law against homosexual behavior( whatever that means). The law he could be referring to could be the penal code which talks about carnal knowledge between two men( so called Sodomy laws) but does not mention homosexuality Gay activists meet openly and have registered organizations fight for gay rights and they are breaking no laws.
So, we can assume that what Raila means is that homosexuals will be arrested for having sex with a person of the same sex. The only way this can happen is if you are having sex in public- this could apply to heterosexuals too. If the police were to break into my house to try and catch me having sex with my boyfriend, I would throw so many broken laws ( including entrapment, right to privacy etc) that they would not sustain a case against me.
Raila went further to speak about lesbianism. Surprisingly, it seems that Raila does not know that the penal code does not say anything about or against lesbianism. NOTHING.  So, by him making those declarations, he has exposed his ignorance of the law.

Pierre Le Roux, a South African blogger, asks, “will institutionalized homophobia in Africa ever be eradicated?”:

Institutionalized homophobia does not seem to be going away anytime soon. Parts of Africa still like to bully homosexuals for political gain while others appear to have no problem to turn their backs on the GLBT community when it serves their agendas.[…]
It has been reported by the Gay and Lesbian Coalition of Kenya, that since Sunday they have received numerous phone calls from members of the GLBT community expressing their fears of being arrested or possibly falling victim to extortion of money from people threatening to expose them or officials wanting to arrest them.

Tamaku, an admirer of the prime minister, reminds Mr. Odinga that he promised a “New Kenya” where the state would not be on control of private lives:

[…]he spoke convincingly of a New Kenya where citizens’ private lives would be free from the control of the State and we cheered him on because we thought here is a politician with depth. {…}
Therefore can the Prime Minister also issue a statement to clarify just how police are to identify homosexuals before arresting them? Will it now be an offence for two men to be enjoying a quiet drink together if none of them is married? Will police now patrol the estates in vans festooned with ‘Government of Kenya Rectal Exam Unit’? And if one is identified as homosexual will he be sent to the Kenyan colony on Mars since homosexuality is considered ‘unAfrican’ and ‘unnatural'? I seriously want to put this whole saga to one side and accept it as just cheap politics and playing to the gallery in the week we heard about drug-trafficking government officials but I still can’t help thinking it is unethical conduct and most unbecoming of the office of Prime Minister.

Throwing gays behind bars on the basis of sexual orientation is violation of human rights and it is not a question of right or wrong/ natural or unnatural- Gige Nyaga argues:

The question here is not whether or not being gay is right or wrong/natural or unnatural! The question we need to ask is whether or not sexual preference is grounds for being placed behind bars or as the good PM states “being turned in to relevant authorities”. It could easily be argued that sexual orientation is now deemed a matter of human rights and what the PM is purporting could be viewed as a violation of these rights especially because the principles guiding these rights on sexual orientation relate to equality and non-discrimination whose violation is strictly punishable by law according to our constitution!

RayRae has written a letter to the Prime Minister:

Dear PM,

I hope this letter finds you well and in good health. I should say I am greatly disappointed in you, I voted you in as my leader knowing that my cries would be heard, my way of living would change as I will have better education and my living standards would rise and my countries economy would be one to reckon with.

Now that you are in power, you are using that power to hurt me and kill my spirits as a Kenyan. What if i was your daughter, would you hide me and still incite my killing? How is that I am breaking the law by hurting now one? What of those bandits who kill with no emotions? What about those that rape our young girls and leave them dead or with a lifetime mystery?

Railahomophobia Tweets:

Twitter harsh tag for this topic is #Railahomophobia. Zawadi urges activists to join Kenyans to stop homophobia”

Join Kenyans on #WorldAIDSDay be a part of the #PreventionRevolution and stop #RailaHomophobia http://bit.ly/g2rASe #takebackthetech

KeneMwikya thanks bloggers for writing about RailaHomophobia:

Thanks to all the guys blogging about #railahomophobia, i wish i could blog too but i'm far from home, tyl guys, make kesho rock!

Was Raila Oding misquoted?:

So the PM is to issue a statement today saying the media misquoted him- that he was referring to gay marriage being illegal #Railahomophobia

Well, let's hear him in his own words:

In his own words! Listen for yourself http://bit.ly/eeakBI So how could the PM have been misquoted? #RailaHomophobia #takebackthetech

Why is Barack Obama friendly with this horrible man?:

Kenya's Prime Minister Raila Odinga on Gays: “We Will Jail Them” – Why is Barack Obama friendly with this horrible man? http://goo.gl/V0tc0

Was his statement a blessing in disguise?:

Although maybe we should thank the Kenyan PM for providing a rallying call for World AIDS day Dec 1st.

Kenyan Pundit wonders:

Shouldn't he be focusing on corrupt Cabinet members, nkt? Kenya PM Raila Odinga orders arrest of gay couples:http://bit.ly/iindL9

2 comments

  • Tall Man Joe

    To know a man from inside out ALL YOU GOT TO DO IS TO GIVE HIM ABSOLUTE POWER!

    TMJ

  • fay me

    i belive that everyone has a right to do what they want to do. if you arer gay or not you are human and thats that. it is all bull to lock up gay people. if gay people were governing the country and they orderd all straight people to be arrested i would still stand for them. i my be young but im smart and i know what is right and what is not. as kenyans we are all to have the right to be who we are

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