When I read the story of the 4 students of University of Port Harcourt that were lynched on allegation of theft, I wept for my country one more time. I have not watched the video and I do not ever intend to watch it. It is very difficult getting an online report of the story without graphic images of the victims being burnt alive. Nigerian bloggers and news reporters need to understand that such violent graphics should come with a trigger warning. I am already tormented at the thought of a human being burnt alive by a sick mob; I can do without the pictures and violent video, please.
Following the breaking of this horrible news, most Nigerians expressed shock that such barbaric acts could still so wantonly be carried out in Nigeria and with the tacit cooperation of members of the police force too. State security men were said to be present at the scene of the lynching but chose not to intervene. Also, there were a few Nigerians who actually tried to justify the murders, they felt if these students actually stole mobile phones and laptops as alleged, they deserved to be lynched, and some even cited their religious books to justify this atrocious mindset. [Read more…]
Kindly sign Nigerian LGBTIs in Diaspora Against Anti Same Sex Laws’ petition to urge President Goodluck Jonathan not to sign the Jail the Gays bill into law.
PRESS STATEMENT- http://wp.me/p1YdPM-9f
Nigeria LGBTIs in Diaspora Against Anti Same-Sex Laws unequivocally condemns the passing of the Same Sex Marriage Prohibition bill by the Nigerian House of Representatives.
The draconian bill was passed in a voice vote on Thursday 30 May, 2013 by members of the House of Representatives. The bill stipulates a 14 years jail term for same-sex marriage and 10 years imprisonment for public show of same-sex affection. The approved bill also stipulates a 10 year imprisonment for anyone who abets a gay person, witnesses a same sex marriage or advocates for LGBT rights.
Nigerian LGBTIs in diaspora against anti same sex laws believes that the Same Sex Marriage Prohibition bill is a blatant violation of human rights of Nigerian gays, lesbians, bisexuals and transsexuals. It is a shame that such draconian bill was passed unanimously in both Nigerian Senate and House of Representatives. [Read more…]
There are ongoing legislative attempts in Nigeria and Uganda to further restrict sexuality rights. There is a clamour for the removal and also the strengthening of sodomy laws inherited by Commonwealth countries in Africa. However, the call for sexuality rights in Africa by the international community is seen as another colonial invasion by many Africans.
Research on sexuality rights is a relatively new developing area in Africa. There is a strong coalition spreading across Africa by Africans advocating for sexuality rights and claiming it as not just any right but as fundamental human rights.
Sexuality rights remain a silent but controversial issue in many parts of Africa; it is not just a controversial issue but also a taboo subject. One of the most efficient ways patriarchy uses sexuality as a tool to create and sustain gender hierarchy in African societies is by enshrouding it in secrecy and taboos.
Many countries in Africa still criminalize homosexuality; sodomy laws are still part of the criminal laws thereby making it ‘legally’ possible to persecute people with different sexual orientation, for example Zimbabwe, Kenya, Uganda, Nigeria, Tanzania and Ghana all have laws under which homosexuality can be prosecuted. In South Africa, where the constitution recognizes same sex relationships, gays and lesbians are often attacked, molested and persecuted for their sexual orientation.
Many African societies do not provide enabling environments to discuss sexual orientation issues. Homosexuality has been condemned by many African leaders as immoral, unafrican and a ‘white man’s disease’.
Africa is a large continent with diverse cultures and ethnicities, however homophobia fueled by religious intolerance and oppressive laws are remarkably similar issues many have in common. It seems however that black homophobia has replaced white racism as the newest form of intolerance to sweep across the African continent. This is not to imply that homophobia is a ‘black African’ phenomenon. In conservative societies including western societies, any challenge to heterosexual norms always provokes moral condemnation, exclusion and violence. [Read more…]
The controversy of whether “sex work” can be defined and treated as real work or not is one that evokes a lot of emotion and sentiments. This is not surprising because the answer to this will determine if this area of “Work” deserves to be acknowledged and given as much legal and social protection and recognition as any other type of work recognized under the auspice of labour laws.
It cannot be denied that “sex workers”, like them or hate them, provide a service. Since prostitution is commonly referred to as the oldest profession, sex work is a service as old as humankind. With the advent of globalization, internet dating, chat rooms, cyber-sex etc, the world’s touted oldest profession has not been left behind in modernizing its trade and services to keep up with the ever changing technology; dynamism is indeed the name of the game. In today’s world, a sex worker is no longer just the woman in skimpy red dress and high heels, lurking at street corners in the middle of the night looking for a customer. Sex workers now include prostitutes, porn actors and actresses, chat room/telephone sex providers, escorts, gigolos etc.
However, like all work, especially in this era of neo–globalization and privatisation of anything that generate profits, prostitutes in many cases do not own their bodies anymore, many are not really in a position to negotiate the prices for their services. The big lords, hotel owners, club owners, chat room owners, internet warlords are now the real employer of sex workers’ labour. The money bags have the money to run the business, employ women and in a growing number of cases men too, to render sexual services, they act as the sub contractors, in fact, it is just another stage of pimping. [Read more…]
The first image showed Amina with the words “Fuck your morals” written across her chest.
The second image has the words “My body belongs to me and is not the source of anyone’s honor” written in Arabic.
Since that episode, she has been hounded by Islamist conservatives who felt she has violated their honour by posting nude pictures of herself.
Whose body, whose honour?
After months of reportedly going into hiding, the outspoken Tunisian feminist who sparked a trend of “topless jihad” has been found and arrested by Tunisian authorities earlier this week and may be charged for conducting “provocative acts.”
What part of “My body belongs to me” don’t these idiots understand? If a woman wants to post nude pictures of herself on the internet, it is her body, her choice, her right. It has nothing to do with your moronic honour. FREE AMINA TYLER NOW!
This is my body; I have the right to do whatever I want with it. If I am not harming you, the decisions have nothing to do with you.
I have the right to post nude pictures of myself online. I have the right to use my body as a canvass, tattoo it or pierce it.
This is my body, I have the right to birth control, to abortion, to have sex with consensual adults regardless of their gender. I do not have to put up with your sermonizing or attempts to legislate over my body. [Read more…]
On October 31, 2011, at the senate house in Abuja, many religious groups mostly Christians from the Catholics and Anglican denominations were mobilized to support the Same Sex Marriage Prohibition bill titled “An Act To Prohibit Marriage Between Persons Of Same Gender, Solemnization Of Same And For Other Matters Related Therewith”. The majority, religious homophobic groups showed up with placards and t-shirts emblazoned with hate words. It was a macabre dance of the majority and rich oppressors against the few voiceless minorities. Children that were supposed to be in school were dragged to the public hearing as part of the homophobic crowd. The hate is already been fed to the next generation and yes, some of these children wearing these t-shirts today would grow up to discover that they are gay, lesbian, bisexual or Trans. I cannot even begin to imagine the trauma this would cause them in future.
The angry, religious, homophobic mob and the not so bright selected senators at the public hearing rained abuses on the few Lesbians, Gays, Bisexual, Transsexuals and human rights activists at the hearing. These activists had come to defend their human rights and point out how the bill violates their rights as Nigerian citizens, they were hardly given the opportunity to speak as they were constantly booed and shouted down.
Senators asked the few activists who presented papers inappropriate questions like:
“What is your religion?”
“Can you openly stand up right now and identify yourself as gay or lesbian?”
The few that stood up were further booed and humiliated by the senators and the homophobic majority in the house. The senators violated the rights of the protesters by asking them to stand up and identify their sexual orientation or religious affiliation. It was supposed to be a parliamentary room not a guillotine room.
Homophobes want sexual minorities to identify themselves publicly, and when they don’t , they claim LGBTs are ashamed because they know they are perverts. This discriminatory action of Nigerian lawmakers could be likened to Hitler asking Jews to stand up and identify themselves during the holocaust. Homosexuals are now the target of hate and ignorance. Once upon a time, not so long ago, blacks were called niggers and considered only fit to be slaves, Jews were considered sub-human, women were classified as property, now homosexuals are called faggots and considered only fit to be thrown in jail or stoned. [Read more…]
I AM COMING OUT!
I am coming out, out of my shell
Long under the influence of your spells
Locked away in your antique culture cell
Where no one could hear me yell
I had screamed all in vain
Only I could feel the pain
It is time to break the chains
The ghosts of the past I must slay
Weighed down by societal shackles
Banging to be out, proud and sparkle
I am coming out, out of my shell
Doing away with your lying shields
It is unnatural, you scream
You will burn in hell, you preach
Fires and brimstones you rake
From your societal grip I break
In angry defence the truth I seek
To be free, to be me, I must speak
Coming out, head high, sets me free
I am proud, out and ready to peak [Read more…]
May 17 is International Day Against Homophobia (IDAHO), now also known as International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia (IDAHOT). I strongly believe it should be International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia.
Anyway, in keeping with the theme of IDAHO this year, which is, “Fight the Homophobia Web Virus: Fighting homophobia on the Internet and in social media”, I shall be posting some videos and poems to spread the message of Equality and speak out against discrimination.
I am kicking this off with a video of the protest rally I organized last year to mark IDAHO, under the auspice of my group “Nigerian LGBT in Diaspora Against Anti Same Sex Laws” . The protest took place outside the Nigerian embassy in London. We were joined by notable human rights activist, Peter Tatchell and also our Ugandan comrades, brothers and sisters. It is difficult for Africans especially immigrants to participate in protests especially one that is deemed very controversial. We salute the bravery of the few who turned up to give a face to the many faceless, voiceless and persecuted Nigerian LGBTs. The quality of your solidarity cannot be quantified!
This year I am spreading the IDAHO message via websites and if I am up to it, I will join the London Pride flash event to mark IDAHO later in the day! Enjoy the video and subsequent ones, I am happy to answer your questions on the subject matter. HAPPY IDAHO!
I am angry, not just angry but very, very angry. I am indignant, not just for myself but on behalf of many sisters especially the voiceless sisters! If you are not angry after watching the infamous video of Bishop Oyedepo slapping a young girl to the thunderous applause of his church members, you are also a target of my anger!
It is said that “Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from a religious conviction”. Present day examples abound, e.g.
“Homosexuality is a sin, let us kill Gays”
“Witchcraft is evil, let us slap young witches”
“I am the chosen one; therefore I will bomb out all others from my holy land”
“Sorcery is a sin; let us behead its practitioners”
“Adultery is a sin, let us stone the unmarried pregnant woman”
…and the list goes on and on.
The YouTube video of Bishop Oyedepo slapping a young girl he accused of witchcraft should make any sane person angry. The thunderous applause from his followers during this dastardly act is nauseating enough to make one vomit. Why is there a complete lack of common sense amongst religious fanatics? I guess if they could reason, they wouldn’t be fanatics anyway! Really, how could any sane person encourage the molestation of a young person and actually applaud the torturer?
Religion is the opium of the masses, yes, many atrocities have been committed in the name of religion, but really, for how long must these atrocities continue before we break the chain of religious oppression in Nigeria?
The colonisers that introduced Christianity to Nigerians would not in this age, in their own country, dare openly embrace such atrocities as perpetrated in the name of God in Nigeria today. Africans need to wake up from their slumber and see religion for what it really is; an addictive drug that numbs reason and robs away common sense! I do not even want to go into the mental slavery aspect of organized religion and how much it has Africans, especially Nigerians, in its evil grip!
Bishop David Oyedepo had the audacity to slap the young girl who dared to assert that she is not a witch as accused, but a witch for Jesus. Now, how is being a witch for Jesus a crime? [Read more…]
“Minority can have their say but majority will have their way” is the new anthem of majority homophobic members of the supposedly enlightened Nigerian community on the issue of the draconian ‘Same-Sex Marriage (Prohibition)’ bill. The mere thought that some supposedly enlightened people still think a majority has the right to have its way at the expense of the human rights of a minority is really worrisome. What enlightened mind would even support such a proposition in this age?
Many Nigerians eagerly confuse democracy with majority rule, what a shame and how sad for my beloved motherland. There is a big difference between Democracy and Majority rule. According to this ‘ill-perceived’ concept of democracy as ‘minority having their say and majority having their way’, I guess the scenarios below would be deemed democratic: [Read more…]
It seems no debate on human rights of lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transsexuals is complete without the inevitable snide remark, “If human rights of homosexuals are recognized, rapists, pedophiles and people who sleep with animals will start claiming human rights violations too”.
Why do homophobes always feel the need to mention sex with animals when commenting on LGBT rights issues? How is homosexuality and sex with animals, rape or pedophilia the same thing? Isn’t it time people moved away from unjustified, illogical sentiments and address real issues?
Rape is the unlawful compelling of a person through physical force or duress to have sexual intercourse. It is a type of sexual assault usually involving forceful sexual intercourse, which is initiated by one or more persons against another without consent. The act may be carried out by physical force, coercion, abuse of authority or with a person who is incapable of giving valid consent. The term is most often defined in criminal law. A person who commits an act of rape is known as a Rapist.
Sexual Orientation i.e. Homosexuality, Bisexuality, Pansexuality or Heterosexuality has nothing to do with sexual harassment. If anyone grabs your ass in public or even in private without your consent, it does not matter whether the person is heterosexual or homosexual; it is sexual harassment and assault.
Gender or sexual orientation is not the factor that determines if you had been sexually harassed or molested; lack of consent is the decisive factor. It is a criminal offense to sexually assault, harass or abuse anyone. So, what connection does a loving relationship between consenting adults have with rape? None at all! [Read more…]