Sunday, June 7, 2015

Kenya's long, painful road to gay equality

From The Independent-

Three years on, Immah Reid, a Kenyan gay rights activist, is still haunted by a young girl’s text. The girl had been locked in her bedroom in a Nairobi suburb for three days. Her mother had sent in men to rape her, and her little sister was forced to listen to her screams. “I don’t want you to come and get me because they will kill me,” she wrote. “I just want you to know.”

The girl, whom Ms Reid never heard from again, was a lesbian. In an all too common occurrence, her family believed that she could be “cured” through sex with a man in a practice known as “corrective rape”. Some of the girls subjected to such an ordeal never get over it, and end up taking their own lives.

Such is the attitude towards homosexuality in Kenya that many never come out, sometimes turning to religion for answers, sometimes taking a husband and having children.

And yet it is also the country where a little over a month ago, the High Court ordered the government to allow the official registration of a gay rights non-governmental organisation, a landmark ruling that followed years of official stonewalling of pro-homosexual groups seeking legal recognition and status.

More here-

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