Namibia’s Minister of Justice, Yvonne Dausab, called the country’s colonial-era legislation banning homosexual acts “outdated and discriminatory.”
“The LGBTQI community is a human being and we must not allow it to be excluded from the bundle of rights set out in our constitution,” Justice Minister Yvonne Dausab said. Thomson Reuters Foundation.
“This sodomy law is outdated and discriminatory… All Namibians should enjoy life, dignity, freedom and the pursuit of happiness,” she said.
The minister said the laws banning homosexual acts were part of a series of outdated laws the cabinet was due to discuss at its next meeting.
The country has revised the laws it has written in its books which are no longer relevant or necessary. A recent report on homosexuality laws found that 115 cases were reported between 2003 and 2019.
The laws were passed from a period when South Africa controlled the country, and the legislation originated from the British colonial rule in South Africa. In 2018, British Prime Minister Theresa May publicly apologized for the anti-gay and lesbian laws Britain has spread around the world, and urged countries where they were still on the books to do so. remove.
This week, local LGBTIQ rights organization Equal Namibia organized a protest march that took them through the streets to the country’s parliament. Holding the brooms high, they called on the government to “sweep away” outdated laws.
The call to do away with the laws found support from the wife of the country’s President Hage Geingob. First Lady Monica Geingos said her it is time for the laws to disappear.
“Abolish all outdated laws and stop being homophobic,” Geingos said earlier this week. Her comments came after the young leader of her husband’s ruling SWAPO party described same-sex relationships as a “satanic and demonic practice”.
Ephraim Nekongo, the party’s youth wing secretary, urged the country’s parliament to ignore the issue of removing laws and focus on more immediate concerns for the nation.