The Nigeria Police Force, NPF, has revealed it plans to go after members of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer, LGBTQ, community in the country.
The move followed a video on TikTok where eight persons publicly declared their membership of the community. The suspects, three women and five men had uploaded the video on social media to join the ‘Of Course’ trend, and had spoken about their sexual identities.
Reacting to the viral video, Force Public Relations Officer, FPRO, Olumuyiwa Adejobi, said “They are criminals and punishable under the law, as necessary action according to the provisions of the law in Nigeria will be taken due to these unnatural offences which are totally condemned.”
It would be recalled that former President Goodluck Jonathan had, in 2014, assented to a bill outlawing gay relationships and same-sex marriage. With the assent, anyone convicted of involvement in a gay relationship or entering into a same-sex marriage contract or civil union faces up to 14 years in jail.
It is a crime to have a meeting of homosexuals or to operate or attend a gay club, society or organisation. Public show of intimate same-sex affection is also outlawed, while offenders risk 10 years in jail .
By Opeoluwa Michael Ayobami