Nigeria Senate Approves Anti-Gay Marriage Bill…Gay Couples Face Up To 14 Years In Jail, Witnesses Face 10 Years


Nigeria’s Senate voted Tuesday to criminalize gay marriage, instituting prison terms of more than a decade for violations in a nation where gays and lesbians already face discrimination and abuse.

“Such elements in society should be killed,” Sen. Baba Dati said during the debate.

Under the measure, couples who marry could face up to 14 years in jail, and witnesses or anyone who helps couples marry could be sentenced to 10 years behind bars. That’s an increase over the bill’s initial penalties.

The proposed law also has drawn the interest of European Union countries, some of which already offer Nigeria’s sexual minorities asylum based on gender identity. The British government also recently threatened to cut aid to African countries that violate the rights of gay and lesbian citizens.
During the debate, Nigeria Senate President David Mark said Nigeria would not bow to international pressure on any legislation. “Anybody can write to us, but our values are our values,” Mark said. “No country has a right to interfere in the way we make our laws.”

Source – Associated Press


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