Nigerian Human Rights Activists Organize the First Annual International Day Against Homophobia

nigeria-flag Previously, we blogged about the discrimination and persecution faced by the LGBTQQI* community in Nigeria. First, there was Nigeria’s Same Gender Marriage bill, proposing the criminalization of marriage between consenting adults of the same sex. And then  Nigeria’s Minister of Foreign Affairs declared that, as far as he’s concerned, the lack of organizing among LGBTQQI groups in Nigeria means that they don’t exist and shouldn’t be granted rights.

In response,  The Independent Project for Equal Right (TIP) and IWHC partner The International Center for Sexual Reproductive Rights (INCRESE) in Nigeria are gathering to mark the very first annual International Day Against Homophobia (IDAHO) and related forms of discrimination.

According to a media release issued by INCRESE and TIP, IDAHO is to be marked every 17th of May in Lagos State and across the globe.  The media release follows:

    “Discrimination on the basis of age, gender, sexual orientation and gender identity which leads to human rights violations has become a major concern of human rights organizations in Nigeria. In addition, as human rights are interrelated and interdependent, we are equally concerned about democracy and good governance in Nigeria. Fundamental human rights of ALL Nigerians are guaranteed in Chapter IV of the1999 Nigerian constitution and the Nigeria government itself had committed to signing without reservation onto several international human rights treaties such as the International covenant on Civil and Political Rights as well as the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights to mention a few. Though Nigeria has ratified some of these treaties, it is yet to domesticate others.

    ‘We want to also use this medium to call on the Nigerian government to domesticate the Convention on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW)’ said Dorothy Aken’Ova, Executive Director of INCRESE.

    Led by the Independent Project for Equal rights- (TIP) and the International Center for Sexual Reproductive Rights (INCRESE), activists and representatives of diverse human rights organizations in Nigeria will appear before the press in Lagos state on the 16th May, 2009 to articulate their advocacy against all forms of discrimination including sexual orientation and gender identity.

    For more information on this release, please contact Efe Brown Ohwerhi- program associate on Human rights through +234-808-2685594.”

*LGBTQQI= Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, Queer, Questioning, Intersex

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