President Jonathan signs law prohibiting same sex marriage
Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan has signed into law bill prohibiting same-sex marriages, which had been approved by parliament late last year.
According to presidential spokesman Reuben Abati “The president has signed the bill into law.” “He is the president of Nigerians, who have repeatedly spoken out against same-sex marriage,” he added. “It’s against our culture.” Last year, both houses of Nigeria’s parliament unified their positions on the bill, paving the way for presidential approval.
According to the legislation, same-sex marriages contracted overseas would not be considered valid in Nigeria. It stipulates that the only marriages to be recognized in Nigeria will be those between a man and a woman. Under the legislation, homosexuals (gays or lesbians) risk 14-year jail terms if convicted.
Anyone caught operating or participating in gay clubs, societies or organizations – directly or indirectly – will be slapped with a ten-year jail sentence. Additionally, anyone who administers, witnesses, assists the enactment of a same-sex marriage will be sentenced to ten years in prison.
According to AP, Human rights activists reported that dozens of gay men were being arrested in northern Nigeria in an apparent response to the law.
The United States, Britain and Canada condemned the law, with Secretary of State John Kerry saying Monday that it “dangerously restricts freedom” of expression and association of all Nigerians.
The presidency didn’t widely publicize the move in hopes of avoiding intense diplomatic pressure, especially from the US and Britain, the latter of which threatened a backlash if Nigeria went ahead with the bill.
The same sex law United States of America
Same-sex unions have been on the political radar in the United States since the Hawaii Supreme Court ruled in 1993 that denying marriage licenses to same-sex partners violated the Hawaii constitution unless there is a “compelling state interest.”
Currently, 28 states have amendments banning same-sex marriage in their state constitutions. There are currently 17 U.S. states that recognize in-state same-sex marriages (plus the District of Columbia),
A bill that stigmatises Russia’s gay community and bans the distribution of information about homosexuality to children was overwhelmingly approved by the lower house of parliament.
More than two dozen protesters were attacked by anti-gay activists and then detained by police, hours before the State Duma approved the Kremlin-backed legislation in a 436-0 vote.