LGBT Rights in Africa: Why we need international solidarity- Interview on SkyNews

Lesbians, Gays, Bisexuals and Transsexuals from countries where their sexual orientation and/or gender identity is criminalised need international solidarity. What we do not need is seeing international leaders who claim to support our fight for LGBT rights wine and dine our oppressors.

When we watch international leaders who are supposedly LGBT allies frolicking with our oppressors, the message we get is that we do not matter. In the long run, it is all about their politics, not their words. International leaders should please WALK THEIR TALK.

Below is a video of my interview on SkyNews on the topic LGBT Rights in Africa and why we need international solidarity.

The pictures below of President Obama and First Lady Michele Obama posing for pictures with President Museveni of Uganda and President Goodluck Jonathan of Nigeria makes me sad. Uganda and Nigeria are two African countries that have taken the lead in criminalising Lesbians, Gays, Bisexuals and Transsexuals with the active support of these presidents. As an affected Nigerian bisexual, these pictures make me sad.

As Washington Blade aptly  puts it in its headline, LGBT rights take back seat at Africa summit.


President Obama and first lady Michelle Obama greet Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni at the White House on Aug. 5, 2014. (Photo courtesy of the State Department)


President Obama and first lady Michelle Obama greet Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan at the White House on Aug. 5, 2014. (Photo courtesy of the State Department)

A sad back-seat, indeed.

 Related links-

Homosexuality and the legalisation of Homophobia in Africa

Nigerian and Ugandan Lawmakers: The Passing of the Anti-Homosexuality Bills


  1. Queen Ekuba says

    I felt so sad the day the picture above was posted. Something in me died. There was also a similar picture of the President of Uganda (Museveni) with the Obamas. It made me wonder whether LGBT rights are even valued in countries that claim to value it etc. I know that if a race of people were being persecuted in a particular country, it would quickly be blacklisted by most civilized countries. So why is LGBT rights a different affair. I understand that this African leaders meeting was held, among other things. to convince the leaders to keep trading with the US (as opposed to say China which has recently made loads of economic inroads into Africa). Nevertheless, I find it very sad that the rights of sexual minorities is overlooked. I also read recently that Rebecca Kadaga, the Ugandan Speaker of Parliament who spearheaded the passing of the now repealed ‘jail the gays’ law has been given a visa to come to the UK. She might be coming to an area near you soon Yemisi!

  2. Meggamat says

    The problem with modern politics is that is so often awards power to those with empty charisma rather than principles.

  3. Yemisi Ilesanmi says

    Queen Ekuba- That picture really made me sad, betrayed and angry. Please if you have more information on when and why Rebecca Kadaga is visiting UK, do share. I am sure my Ugandan activist counterparts and our allies will be glad to pay her a visit at whatever event she is attending in UK.

  4. Queen Ekuba says

    Hi Yemisi,
    Sorry for the late response just seeing this. I read about it on Pink News. It’s a Ugandan Investment Forum & she’s billed to speak. It’s so annoying cos I know several Ugandans are exiled in the UK & other countries because of her actions (& that of other Ugandan MPs) & yet she gets to travel wherever she wants etc. The story at the Pink News site has a link where you can get free tickets to attend the program so maybe some LGBT activists & allies in the UK would be happy to pay her a visit

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