Friday, February 26, 2016

Suspect wants homosexuality decriminalized

By Jones Ngwabih
            A  Cameroonian homosexual suspect, Ndive Lyonga Nacknise, has added his voice to those who publicly advocate for the decriminalization of homosexuality in the country.
Ndive Lyonga
Ndive Lyonga- who had before reportedly been arrested in connection with his alleged involvement in the crime of homosexuality, told reporters that it should be left to individuals to choose their sexual orientation and not other wise.
      Ndive Lyonga, first detained in Fako Division sometime in 2009 accused of being gay but released on bail, would not admit or refute the accusation that he is gay; he preferred not to comment on the accusation in the absence of his lawyers.
    “The promotion of Human rights should be everybody’s concern”, he said emphasizing that Cameroon is signatory to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), adopted by the United Nations in 1948, as well as the United Nations International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) since June 27, 1984.
    Family members say Ndive Lyonga remains a likely target for arrest, especially as he advocates homosexuality openly.
 Homosexuality is a crime in Cameroon, punishable under section 347 of the Penal Code.
 “Whoever has sexual relationship with a person of the same sex shall be punished with imprisonment from six months to five years and a fine from 20.000Fcfa to 200.000 Fcfa ,”states Section 347 of the Cameroon Penal code
     Ndive Lyonga was a university student when he was first arrested as a suspected homosexual in 2009.But reports add that, he would later be summoned at least twice for police interrogation still in connection with alleged homosexual activities . 
 Homosexuality /lesbianism is legal in Europe and parts of the USA
     But the practice is generally seen as abomination in the continent of Africa even if South Africa has decriminalized it
     Amnesty International argues that international human rights laws cover the protection of the rights of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) people around the world.
It is on this strength that Amnesty International wants that, all people, regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity, should be able to enjoy their human rights.
      Yet over 60 countries still consider homosexuality as a crime and out of that number over 45 of them have ratified both the UDHR and the ICCPR.
Cameron is one of those countries still hesitant to legalize homosexuality.
Despite the prosecution and persecution of gays, many Cameroonians are still identified with the same-sex sexual orientation.
    Only recently, a Buea resident named Nkwenti Peazy Emmanuel was accused of being a bi-sexual but fearing that he could be prosecuted and persecuted, the father of four reportedly abandoned his family. His whereabouts is not known since January.
   Even as the prosecution and persecutions of homosexuals continue to draw sharp criticism from international organizations and first-world countries, it remains to be seen if Cameroon will muster the courage to repeal the law on homosexuality.


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