Wednesday, 15 January 2014

Nigeria Officially Declares War on LGBTs

Nigerian President, Goodluck Jonathan has signed the Same Sex Marriage (Prohibition) Bill 2013 into law. This means LGBTs can now be charged to court and jailed for up to 14 years when found guilty. Like every other non-productive government around the world, the Nigerian government has found an enabling diversionary tool that has a lethal dose of religions backing.

Though this bill can not be celebrated as an achievement, giving the reaction the decision received from developed countries. Western countries are being blamed for bringing this supposedly "unnatural" human behavior to Africa. What they fail to tell everyone or acknowledge is that the LGBT community has existed before cable TV or Multi Choice came to Nigeria.

I grew up in the north and I remember vividly that there were "Dan Daudu", Men with female personalities who are very comfortable living like women. They even tell everyone to call them female names like Amina, Aisha and Laraba (a unisex name). I'm sure if the opportunity for sex change existed back then, these young Nigerians would go for it. I remember vividly that back then, no one had a problem with their existence or with the way they chose to live their lives, instead men, women and kids alike were fond of them after family members had tried several times but failed with intervention aimed to man them up.

Thinking about it, these Dan Daudus were teenagers and in their early twenties, they were in their curious years. Who was helping them out with their biological needs? Men of course, Nigerian men for that matter so, the government should stop pretending LGBTs are alien to the Nigerian society. They've always been there but are now a problem because going after them helps the government look bold and rebellious in international politics.

My opinion about LGBTs? They also have the right to live their lives without bothering anyone or being bothered. Mind you, accepting that LGBTs have the right to live as they wish has to be learnt. If you can't rap your head around it, pray for them if you are religious but I'm now of the opinion that they should be allowed to live freely like straight people.

I believe things will change for the better with time. Now, there are consequences for discriminating against LGBTs in most developed countries especially against celebrities. Let's face it, there was a time in Nigeria that having a set of twins was a taboo, there was a time that some white men could not imagine having equal right as a black man. As the government pursues other selfish agendas, as people get enlightened and worry less about poverty, we would have evolved and perception on LGBTs will be better, fair and balanced

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