Kenya, Africa

The country is named after Mount Kenya, a very significant landmark and the second highest mountain peak of Africa. Violent riots followed the flawed national elections in December 2007. 1500 people were killed in ethnic and political fighting. On 28 February 2008, an agreement on the formation of a coalition government was signed in which the opposition leader would become Kenya's second Prime Minister. The Penal Code criminalizes homosexual behavior and attempted homosexual behavior between men, which is referred to as "carnal knowledge against the order of nature". The penalty is 5 to 14 years' imprisonment (rarely enforced). Lesbian relations are not prohibited in the law.

 

News & Reports:

 

CJ Mutunga Reiterates Supreme Court Will Rule On Gay Rights As He Hits Out At Anti-Gay Lobbyists

Chief Justice Willy Mutunga has given impetus to gay activists after saying that the Supreme Court will rule on the controversial issue of gay rights and abortion. Speaking in Washington during a visit, Mutunga said that courts would not be compromised and will ensure its independence will continue despite the Old Guard’s resistance to reform.… Read more »

Nairobi’s Unofficial ‘Official’ Gay Bar – Tacos – Closes After Boycott By Gays

Tacos bar, that was Nairobi’s unofficial ‘official’ gay bar is reported to have closed down and been sold after a boycott by gay patrons when the management barred LGBT members several months ago. The bar, that has long been a favorite for the LGBT community, is reputed to have suffered losses when the management ordered… Read more »

Parents, Helping A Gay Child Come Out

Thursday, Oct. 11, is National Coming-Out Day, an annual celebration of living openly for people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender. Some people approach this particular square on the calendar with pride and courage, others with trepidation. Then there’s a third group, which gazes at the day with an uncomfortable blend of longing and… Read more »

Three Lesbians Beaten, Assaulted In Nairobi CBD

(UPDATED) Three lesbian women were reportedly assaulted last week on Thursday morning by persons known to them inside a lodging house in downtown Nairobi. The three women, it is alleged, had just spent a night together in the same bed and were chatting when two men – who are known to them – stormed into… Read more »

GALCK AGM 2012 – 31st August and 1st September, Nairobi.

Hello Kenyas LGBTI community, It is a great week, a marvelous week actually. It is the first week at the community centre since the 2012 Annual General Meeting. Walking into the GALCK centre one can sense an aura of newness, anticipation and excitement. It would be a lie if we did not mention the anxiety… Read more »

Kenya’s HIV Challenge: Easing Stigma For Gay Men

Health officials in Kenya say reducing the transmission of HIV among gay men is a central part of their national AIDS strategy. But they face serious challenges, including the fact that homosexuality is still a crime in the East African nation. HIV rates among gay and bisexual men in Kenya are far higher than the… Read more »

US Embassy in Nairobi Hosts Gay Pride Event

Nairobi – On Tuesday, the U.S. embassy in Kenya’s capital hosted a gay pride event, believed to be the first of its kind in the country. The event is as part of the Obama administration’s policy to fight prejudice against lesbians, gays, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people. On Tuesday morning the embassy presented what is… Read more »

Kenya: Bars introduce bans on LGBT customers

Several reports from Kenya indicate that bars and clubs in the country’s main cities are now enforcing a ban on LGBT people. Reports from Nairobi, Nakuru and Mombasa indicate that popular bars enforce a strict no-entry policy towards men who are judged to be ‘too effeminate or women seen as too masculine or butch’. Tacos… Read more »

The Road to Safety – Executive Summary

Strengthening Protection of LGBTI Refugees in Uganda and Kenya Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex (LGBTI) refugees are often among the most vulnerable and isolated of refugees. This is especially true in places where they are at heightened risk due to violent attacks, discrimination, and laws that criminalize same-sex relations. In addition, in many countries… Read more »

Kenyan Clergy, Oppose Call By National Human Rights Commission To Legalise Homosexuality

Members of the clergy and some human rights activists in Kenya have raised their objections to recommendations last week that homosexuality be de-criminalised in the East African country. The recommendations are proposed in a report on safeguarding sexual and reproductive health rights. The report, launched on Thursday, is as a result of a public inquiry… Read more »

Kenya: Government watchdog backs repeal of laws against homosexuality and prostitution

The Kenya National Human Rights Commission has published a report calling for the decriminalisation of homosexuality and prostitution in the east African state. The governmental Commission’s report on sexual and reproductive health rights was published this week, the Daily Nation reported, as a public inquiry came to an end. Gay offences in Kenya carry penalties… Read more »

Prof Makau Mutua: I Support Gays, So What?

Interviewed by Denis Nzioka, Prof. Makau Mutua, Dean in an American university, says ‘Matters of human rights and dignity are not a popularity contest. We must do what is right’. Prof. Makau Mutua is the Dean, SUNY Distinguished Professor , Floyd H. & Hilda L. Hurst Faculty Scholar, The State University of NY, Buffalo Law… Read more »

Video: Risky Work in Kenya

Throughout our month in Kenya, Jenni and I ask ourselves, “Would we continue our activism if we received death threats?” Truthfully, we’re not sure. Almost everyone we interviewed in Kenya have had their physical safety threatened at one time or another, and yet they all choose to continue their work. Supergay David Kuria, Kenya’s first… Read more »

Trans In Kenya: A Woman Tells Her Story

It’s hard enough to survive as a gay or lesbian in Kenya. Living as a transperson in Kenya and trying to access medical care brings a different complexity. n Kenya public hospitals deny medical care to transgender people, and government offices refuse to change their identification. Jenni and I spend an afternoon with one pioneering… Read more »

Kenyan Superallies: Reverends on a Mission

Would you be willing to stand up for a minority group that you weren’t a part of? What if it cost you your reputation? Your job? Maybe even your life? In Nairobi we met with two extraordinary individuals, Reverend Michael Kimindu, and Reverend John Makokha who run Other Sheep Africa and Other Sheep Afrika-Kenya, respectively.… Read more »

Kenya slum fires demonstrate need to ensure housing rights- non-gay background story

The fires that swept through the Nairobi slums of Kibera and Mathare reportedly destroying up to 700 homes, were a sharp reminder to African housing ministers meeting in the city of the need to ensure slum dwellers have access to proper services. Kibera is one of Africa’s largest informal settlements and the blaze, which started… Read more »

What is Gay and Lesbian Life Like in Kenya?

In November 2010 the Kenyan Prime Minister condemned homosexuality saying “If found, the homosexuals should be arrested and taken to relevant authorities.” Under international pressure, he retracted his statements days later, saying he only meant that same-sex marriages are illegal in Kenya. The Kenyan penal code criminalizes homosexual behavior with up to 14 years imprisonment… Read more »

Supergay David Kuria: Kenya’s First Openly Gay Political Candidate

In a country where homosexual acts are illegal, you would never believe that an openly gay man could run for public office. And yet, David Kuria has never backed down from standing for his beliefs. He’s been Kenya’s most visible activist beginning with his work as Chairman of the Kenya Gay and Lesbian Coalition of… Read more »

Security High As GALCK Offices Broken Into

Thieves also attack two other offices This morning, thieves broke into the GALCK offices and made away with goods and computer monitors. In what is described as a robbery, the thieves also broke into a clinic located on the first floor building where GALCK offices are also located. They also made away with unknown items… Read more »

Expert Explains Why There Is Little Research On Kenyan LGBTI

Nguru Karugu is a Kenyan public health consultant. He recently spoke about why there is very little research on LGBTI except the MSM in Kenya’s National Aids Programmes. Nguru Karugu, a public health consultant on LGBTI healthcare needs Below are his remarks as told to Behind the Mask’s Melissa Wainaina: “The HIV pandemic in the… Read more »

Persecuted at Home, African Gays Seek Kenya Refuge

Until a new anti-homosexuality bill caused a wave of homophobia in Uganda, John and Paul could hold hands in the streets of the capital Kampala and kiss in night clubs. Then the nightmare started — people began insulting and then assaulting them, and then they had to run away to Kenya. The couple have been… Read more »

Sub-Saharan Africa: Problems with Male Circumcision and HIV Transmission

Important new article finds fault with recent male circumcision trials in Africa. Sub-Saharan African randomised clinical trials into male circumcision and HIV transmission: Methodological, ethical and legal concerns In 2007, WHO/UNAIDS recommended male circumcision as an HIV- preventive measure based on three sub-Saharan African randomised clinical trials (RCTs) into female-to-male sexual transmission. A related RCT… Read more »

Kenya: Blackmail and extortion of gay men on the rise

When Patrick Muiru* met George* on a Facebook dating page, little did he know this was the start of his problems that will leave him naked, sexually assaulted, beaten and humiliated. Patrick is a 26 year old closeted gay man who has fallen prey to blackmailers and extortionists targeting gay men. Patrick who lives in… Read more »

Kenyan Teen Drama Shuga: Gay Rights from the Ground Up

Over the past few years, the issue of gay rights in Africa has become particularly heated with presidents, preachers and global petitioners all wading in. Kenya has been no exception to this trend. Incidents of sexual abuse and ‘corrective rape’ in Nairobi are on the increase and 2010 saw mass attacks against gay men. Meanwhile,… Read more »

Kenyan men trafficked as sex slaves to Gulf states

A Kenyan gay magazine has exposed male sex trafficking between Kenya and the United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Saudi Arabia. Identity magazine says that gay and bisexual Kenyans are being lured from universities with promises of jobs only to end up as sex slaves. The prestigious Kenyatta University is being particularly targeted, the magazine found.… Read more »

Identity Magazine

Check out the latest issue of Identity Magazine Source – Issuu

Kenya’s David Kuria Leaves LGBTI Activism To Pave Way For The Next Generation

The Kenyan LGBTI activist David Kuria has announced his exit from mainstream LGBTI activism after a decade of involvement and leadership. During the 10 years that he was active in the struggle for LGBTI rights in Kenya, Kuria became well-known as one of the public faces of the country’s gay community, daring to show his… Read more »

The Gray Area of Gay Refugees

A gay Ugandan couple fled to a Kenyan refugee camp after being disowned by their families and threatened by their community Nairobi, Kenya — The two tender, soft-spoken Ugandans shared a circle of good friends back in their hometown of Kampala. They were close with their families and they started a restaurant together. Life was… Read more »

Kenya: The Gray Area of Gay Refugees

A gay Ugandan couple fled to Uganda, thousands of kilometers from home with little more than the clothes on their backs. They came as brothers to live in a scorching refugee camp in northern Kenya. Surrounded by thousands of others who have fled wars and drought in neighboring countries, they came here to save their… Read more »

Kenyab MSM Activist, Simon Mamicha, Dies Aged 29

Simon Mamicha a well-known MSM activist and peer educator has died in a Nairobi hospital aged 29. Mamicha who was born on May 5 1982 died at 7am today at the Nairobi Coptic Hospital where he had been admitted following an illness. Until his death, Simon was an active member of ISHTAR MSM and was… Read more »

Gay Kenya News & Reports 2011

Also see: Behind the Mask LGBT African website 1 3rd Regional Changing Faces, Changing Spaces Conference 2/11 2 HIV Stigma Keeps Asian Population From Accessing HIV Services 3/11 3 POZ Interview with David Kuria from the (GALCK) 4/11 4 LGBT activist talks challenges in Kenya 4/11 5 A FSRN series on gay rights, discrimination and… Read more »

Gay Kenya News & Reports 2010

Also see: Behind the Mask LGBT African website 0 Kenya: New strategy targets most at-risk populations 1/10 1 Living In Shadows – Being Gay In Kenya 2/10 2 Five men arrested in Kenya over gay wedding plans 2/10 3 Kenyan Gays Appeal To The Government For Protection 2/10 4 BBC coverage of Mombasa ‘riot’ against… Read more »

Gay Kenya News & Reports 2009

Also see: Behind the Mask LGBT African website ‘7 Years’: film about gays in Kenya (2007) 1 Kenyan male sex workers serve “politicians and religious leaders” 1/09 2 IDAHO – Report from Nairobi 5/09 3 Kenyan Gays Advised To Strategise Struggle For Rights 5/09 4 NGO Sets Agenda For Sexuality Discussions 5/09 5 Africa: Prevention… Read more »

Gay Kenya News & Reports 2007-08

Also see: Behind the Mask LGBT African website ‘7 Years’: film about gays in Kenya (2007) 1 One step forward, two steps back for Africa’s gay people 2/07 2 Homosexuals come out in Kenya 4/07 3 Human Rights Commissioner Confronts Homophobic Statements 7/07 4 Behind the gay issue 9/07 5 Gay bishop move rejected by… Read more »

Gay Kenya News & Reports 1998-2006

Also see: Behind the Mask LGBT African website ‘7 Years’: film about gays in Kenya (2007) 1 Homosexuality takes root in Kenya 6/98 2 The "Myth" of Homosexuality in Kenya Society 6/98 3 Homosexuality and Aids: A double-edged sword by Wanjira Kiama 6/98 4 AIDS in Kenya: Where Are Kenya’s Homosexuals? 8/98 5 Kenya’s President… Read more »