Saturday, May 30, 2015

Buhari Should Do The Needful By Yanking Off Anti-Gay Law- Alimi

Nigerian gay activist, Bisi Alimi wrote the article this week but it was published yesterday on thehill.com.

This week General Muhammadu Buhari will be inaugurated as Nigerian’s president, a position he won by campaigning on a platform of change. But will that change include the people on the fringe of society, like lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) individuals? Will he eliminate the current repressive policies that his predecessor President Ebele Goodluck Jonathan approved? Can the U.S. and other governments pressure him to do so?

So far, Buhari has offered no public opinion on the matter. This includes when he was a military general and in 1983, toppled a democratically elected civilian government and ruled for 18 months until he himself was overthrown in another coup. At that time, LGBT issues were not part of the public discourse.

It was only in 2004 that the issue came to the forefront during a famous TV interview between Funmi Iyanda and myself, an openly gay Nigerian actor. Attention to the issue grew two years later with the introduction of the Same Sex (Prohibition) Act. Then in 2014, President Jonathan passed a harsher law that mandated a 14-year prison sentence for anyone in a same-sex relationship and a 10-year term for anyone who supports gay clubs, meetings or societies. Anti-gay violence has increased in the year since it passed.

In a recent report released by the LGBT Coalition in Nigeria, more than 100 cases of abuse against the LGBT community was recorded in 2014 alone. Thirty-nine instances of this abuse were carried out by state actors, including the police and it includes; arbitrary arrest, extortion, unlawful detention and “consensual” outing to family members.

As a presidential candidate, Buhari made no public pronouncement about this controversial law or the abuse of LGBT people. Nor did he comment when the opposition accused him of planning a deal with the countries in the West to repeal the law. So what will he do now?

Of course, at this point, there are really only two options: continue to support the repressive law or repeal it.

Supporting it would be the easier and more popular route. According to a 2013 Pew Research Center’s Global Attitudes and Trends report, 98 percent of Nigerians said they believed homosexuality was not a way of life that society should support. In 2013, NOI, a Nigeria based opinion polling agency, showed 92 percent of Nigerians supported the anti-gay bill, largely because of their religious beliefs. But as more countries approve LGBT rights – with Ireland being the most recent example – and as entities like the World Bank refuse to loan money to countries that have anti-LGBT laws, he risks losing international support.

If Buhari decides to repeal the law, he will have more international support, but he will be swimming against the tide and the wishes of most Nigerian people. On the other hand, a Buhari government that supports and upholds the law will be committing a grave mistake by denying many Nigerians the right to live a safe and full existence. Further, because it’s unsafe for them in Nigeria, LGBT individuals account for one of the highest number of migrants from Nigeria to Europe and America, taking with them years of investment in term of education and expertise. Isn’t it in Nigeria’s best interest for them to be able to stay at home and contribute to the development of the country?

While at least for now, Buhari might be silent on this issue, the global community should not be. His inauguration gives them an open window for new engagement and re-negotiation with Nigeria on the issue of social liberty, justice and LGBT rights. The U.S., UK, Germany and the Nordic countries should see this as a chance to support, mentor and encourage Buhari to take the lead in championing true democracy, not just in Nigeria but across Africa. If he is given the right international support through soft power negotiation and not bullying, through encouragement and not probing, through mentoring and not dictating I hope it can happen.

Fortunately, President Barack Obama is sending a powerful delegation led by Secretary of State John Kerry to Buhari’s inauguration, signaling the important role Nigeria is playing in trade and security in West Africa and Africa as a whole. While I have openly criticized the U.S. LGBT Special Envoy Randy Berry, I acknowledge this is a golden opportunity for the U.S. to make good use of his office and support him in working with Nigerian LGBT and civil society.

Clearly Buhari has a lot of competing interests on his time, like fighting Boko Haram, creating jobs and crushing corruption. And his human rights record has not always been good. Like when he curtailed the freedom of the press and endorsed the flogging of civilians for simple infractions like crossing the road instead using footbridge. However, many of his other actions show him to often be a leader who has at the core of his politics humanity and human rights.


While I will not hold my breath that it will happen immediately, I do have hope that one day he will extend those human rights to all Nigerian citizens, especially if there is pressure from the international community like the U.S., from LGBT Nigerians who live abroad, and from activists within the country.

37 comments:

  1. GEJ without a mind of his own, signed a bill that drew d ire of d developed world at d prompting of myopic, self-serving 'bishops'

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    1. SHOUT ALL U WANT, HOMOSEXUALITY IS AN ABNORMALITY. HOW MANY GAYS LOOK NORMAL TO YOU? SIR ELTON JOHN, THIS bisi alimi (obviously looking for asylum and used this method, ellen dejeneres etc.

      How many of us did not squirm or woteva at the idea of homosexuality the first we heard about it.
      Homophopia and Racism are two different things. You have absolutely no power about your race, but homosexuality is a choice (a useless choice at that - spoiling the world)

      You can shout all u want. Nigerians wanting to look like u are forward thinking simply becos the Oyinbo and the Western world have put their stamp of approval on homosexuality.

      I am sure if today they started to stamp out and go against homosexuality, y'all will change your tone and start going against it to. because as the great FELA sang, ZOMBIE na black man
      Black people don finish patapata becos anything oyinbo man tells us to believe and do, then it is ok, we dont have brain to think for ourselves. #

      As Alibaba said, why is polygamy a civil offense and even made a crime (especially if all parties to it are ok?, and homosexuality is now not a crime?) the difference is that the Western world have approved homosexuality and brainwashed the world to believe its ok.

      If we continue accepting Western values simply based on that then I m sorry we will never get out of this slavery to them, becos let us face it we are still enslaved to the white man if not physically - whether we know it or not

      'I' Say so!

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    2. Mr alimi or whatever ur name is, you can do better than this.
      You can seek for a more honorable way to stay in the UK, than puling off this stupid mental stunt. You must be seek in the head, I feel sorry for una mother and father and siblings. You don drag ur family name in the mud.
      Pls just shut up for once . we dont need to hear ur bullshit

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    3. Thank you @ anon 16:08. They should stop trying to force the rubbish down our throats. We reject it and will continue to do so. We don't want that way of life here and will not be bullied by these rabid gays into legalizing their filth.

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    4. @Anonymous 30 May, 2015 16:08, A lot of people have the 'bandwagon' mentality.
      That is what sets apart Kings from mere men. We are but a few who do not automatically conform to 'popular belief', and thus we are great people who are blessed in all good ways, and can never lack; and whose wants, needs, and desires will forever be satisfied
      Look at this idiot Bisi talking of gay rights under new dispensation, when I not had NEPA light in my house for over one week. oshisco

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    5. you are the most foolish person ive seen, ur a disgrace to africa as a whole. i dnt knw how u turned into wat u r now, which is a disgrace and taboo to humanity bt please u and your other gay friends should fck off wait for ur doom p.s dats hell #the deepest part

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  2. Better that those who can't help but be drawn to this way of life go to live in the West. Leave Africa to Almighty God and those who would gladly struggle against Satan in keeping God's law.

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  3. Can u pls hold dis sh*t in u? Cos I nd my dad gat schedules on wat to tackle fIrst, Gay or lessbian,nt included on the mataz on ground...we wanna stp curuption first

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    1. Mennh is time we start seeing gay as corruption in this our country so MR President GMB should include this gay thing in his angender as one of the things he has to fight (Gay is corruption) befor mr presido will say he doesn't know what Gay is ooooo like he said he doesn't know PHCN that he only know NEPA this i agree even me self na only NEPA i sabi

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  4. Can u pls hold dis sh*t in u? Cos I nd my dad gat schedules on wat to tackle fIrst, Gay or lessbian,nt included on the mataz on ground...we wanna stp curuption first

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  5. I wonder why these bloggers make Bisi Alimi news,a new law needs to be in Place for any news article promoting gay people and its agenda with kirikiri for 10 years.Anoufia Bisi please stay in your Satanic land for gays and dont bother coming to Nigeria or Africa.We dont need homos because God loves not the homosexuals.Future of People of LOT awaits you Bisi and your kind mark my Words.

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    1. Gbam! Wonder why bloggers give gay ppl and their associates attention. We don't want oh! Is it by force?

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  6. Your problem na to clean man yansh abi? Other people dey find food to eat. Mr. SHIT PACKER. Boom bye bye SHIT packer.

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  7. MR EDDY said this heat wan kill person o.

    Alimi is a very big pig. The sight of him disgusts me.
    ^
    ^
    ^™THAT EDO BOY.COM~

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  8. MR EDDY said this heat wan kill person o.

    Alimi is a very big pig. The sight of him disgusts me.
    ^
    ^
    ^™THAT EDO BOY.COM~

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  9. Nigerians are thinking of a better life, he is thinking of how to fuk a man through his anus

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  10. The way his white lover was looking at himis that"I can't wait to get your black a.."

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  11. Gaygaycious Gay abeg go siddown! There're too many pressing issues 4 Buhari to face right now. Security, Power, the Economy, Health, Infrastructure.
    U & ur gay community can come back in the next term.

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  12. Keep hoping and keep dream oooo no wake-up sick fag

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  13. We don't want him to change it. Rest abeg. We have far more pressing issues than your sexuality. Stay in England where they want you and stop trying to pollute our country.

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  14. Won't this idiot go and sit down, of all things needed to move Nigeria forward should we be battling with some queer sexual preferences.If you have something to contribute to the nation do it, why must your sexuality be involved.

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  15. Nigeria is a country blessed with intelligent people who can contribute in changing the world, the hindrance is Government. Congratulations to Muhammadu Buhari for his victory in the 2015 presidential election which has given hope to the hopeless because a change in government can be a change in existence. But holding an office of power does not make a leader until he does what will be the overall good of the country being ruled over. Nigerians need a leader that is full of action, that will bring a change in direction, attitude and perceptions. A change that can kick corruption off, the unchangeable change that can help Nigerians shape their lives meaningfully.

    Guy go die u never jam

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  16. Some are out there looking for money,you are there wasting your precious life

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  17. Disgusting...

    Abeg... Pres Buhari and Nigerians have bigger issues (power, jobs, security etc) than being preoccupied with another mans shitbox or other deviant behaviour.

    I hope the Anti-gay laws will become effective and stricter under Buhari (I propose d death penalty) and also apply to blogs or other media that showcase homo nonsense... like its an issue.

    Pls relocate ur rubbish abroad... We give u permission to gerrout...

    We have a muslim as president and a redeemer pastor as Vice president... The days of deviants in this country (gays, exhibitionists, sex offenders) are over... U better relocate or else... U HAVE BEEN WARNED!!!

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  18. I dislike this

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  19. Take time because our new president will not take shit from anybody

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  20. Stupid idiot!!! We are concerned about important issues and all he has in his head is his penis matters. fool...come to nig and we'll inject dat penis of urs with superglue. Irritant!!!

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    1. completely agree with you Anonymous. stupid boy. rubbish!!!!!

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    2. This is the best post so far.We will castrate him.Foolish OMO

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  21. Many Gay people are losers who grew up without access to women. Others become gay because others approve of it while a number engage in it due to money and pressure among other pathetic reasons. The bottom line is that all gay people are mentally deranged losers that are blind to acknowledge their abnormality. Faggots are mentally unstable and they can never be normal. For God's sake, a square peg cannot fit into a round hole. If I have my way I will slowly torture and maim any fag I see.

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  22. I still cant understand why a man would ignore the beauty and suppleness of a woman and settle for a hard bodied male all for the sake of freedom of choice. That's bad choice men! A man should be your competition not your bed mate. GAY PEOPLE ARE LOSERS!

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  23. a beg dis wan no be our priority for now a beg. people neva chop belle full; roads are bad; no light; fuel queues have been on for weeks. a beg these are the very basic, pressing needs right now.

    America, UK, their people don chop belle full; their children have easy access to sound education; there's light, water and welfare for the unemployed. that's why they have time to focus on stuff like gay rights.

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    1. Abi o. gay matter park for one side. for the moment it is a crime, and we dont even have ur time

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  24. This man should just shut up,we are still praying for a better nigeria and is thinking on how to be sleeping with a man without feeling guilty.nonsense

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