Proposal sparks fury in Tanzania

Written by abigailporter

In the East African country of Tanzania, homosexuality is branded “against the order of nature.”

On Saturday, a woman in the north-western town of Geita was arrested after a video of her presenting a ring and kissing another woman went viral. She is held in custody as the search for her partner continues.

Female homosexualtiy

President John Magufuli, having been in power since 2015, has claimed he will arrest any gay rights activists. This is matched by the health ministry banning organisations attempting to control HIV and AIDS despite the estimate of 1.4 million Tanzanians living with HIV.

There are no specific laws on female homosexuality but for male homosexual sex Tanzanians could be imprisoned from 30 years to ‘life.’ In Zanzibar, a semi-autonomous region in Tanzania, lesbianism could lead a woman into prison for up to five years or a fine of up to five hundred thousand shillings (around £165).

It seems odd to me, a lesbian from the Western world, that people still have to hide who they are and who they’re in love with. It seems even more bizarre that a President would have any interest in the goings on in people’s homes despite it being none of his business. His argument is that they have deep rooted culture and homosexuality simply does not fit in with that.

Home Affairs Minister Mwigulu Nchemba stated that “those who want to campaign for gay rights should find another country that allows those things.” Simple.