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Malawi gay couple receive maximum 14-year sentence

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  1. this is a disgrace!!!! can the UK do something and take them as a political refugees!!!!

  2. Jock S. Trap 20 May 2010, 10:15am

    It’s Malawi’s homophobia that should be punished not these innocent men. Human Rights Must not be conditional. Surely to be one self is a fundamental basic human right. I would like to see All funding to these disgusting countries stopped and only returned, if necessary, on certain provisions. Having said that should basic human rights be a provision? I can’t even imagine what these two men must be going through but it’s time to wake up and demand action against these countries.

  3. Sick, sick sick! Have they nothing better to worry about like the state of their health or education services? Shame on them and their sick government! Let these men go free just to prove you are not a bunch of backward looking sick savages!

  4. they’ll get a hard time because Malawi doesn’t want a gay pride march like the ones in the west you know that freak show for tourists I’m sure pride has been infiltrated by homophobes to prove their point.

  5. Lucio Buffone 20 May 2010, 10:34am

    The Malawi Embassy is located at 33 Grosvenor London (nr Bond Street) they can be contacted on 0207 4914172. ‘OUT OF THE BARS AND INTO THE STREETS’

  6. This sentence is utterly depressing and I feel desperately sorry for these people. Having looked at the comments about the conviction on the Nysasa Times website and the stream of hatred not only for gays but for whites and western values in general I feel there is little hope for them. It seems that the hard labour sentence is meant to be the same as for Oscar Wilde, effectively a lingering death sentence.

    Given the contempt that Malawians appear to hold for Europeans, let alone European gays, I believe it will be very easy to make matters worse rather than better. Are there no Nelson Mandela figures left in Africa because it would appear that they will listen to no one other than an African of great status.

    A Diplomat in Uganda once told me he thought all aid should be stopped. I was astonished at the remark. I am beginning to think he might be right if all it brings is contempt and hatred. What a hell holes are being created in Africa. all in the name of God of course.

  7. Mihangel apYrs 20 May 2010, 10:45am

    and now that other beacon of civilisation, Uganda, is re-introducing its barbaric crackdown on LGBT people.

    How can we still sit down with these barbarians at Commonwealth meetings, and send them aid to support their corruption?!

  8. In black Africa, life is cheap, there is no justice, and there are no human rights. Draconian laws are the order of the day. I shall be very surprised if they survive for the full term of the ‘sentence’.

  9. So Cameron & Clegg are going to tackle homphobic bullying…what are they going to do about this then? it’s within their power to take action.

  10. This case is a disgusting abuse of power by the Malawian government who obviously have singled out Steven and Tiwonga for special treatment to warn other gay and lesbian people to be on their gurd. This was nothing less than a SHOW TRIAL.

    Oh, the correct address for the Malawi High Commission in London is as follows:

    High Commission of the Republic of Malawi,
    70 Winnington Road,
    N2 OTX
    The High Commissioner is: HE Dr. Francis Moto

    Please write and tell him what you think!!


  11. Absolutely disgusting. I’m so angry I hardly know what to write. What pathetic ignorance. Being gay isn’t a Western culture any more than being hungry or thirsty is. It isn’t a culture at all.

    What a hateful place Malawi is – or rather its backward government. Will international pressure have any effect on this sentence?

  12. Just the tip of the african homophobic iceberg.


    Contact the Prime Minister demanding that Britain do the following:

    1. Impose trade sanctions against Malawi
    2. Cease all financial aid to Malawi except to NGO’s who have a human rights record which does not discriminate against LGBT people
    3. Malawi to be instantly expelled from the Commonwealth

  14. homosexuals have been around since the dawn of time just getting on with it. gay is a recent development. Africans have seen what happens in the west and I can’t blame them. Folsom street fair anyone.

  15. The report I’ve just seen on CNN made me sick. People jeering them, hopping up and down like chimps at the circus. If it was a sketch, I’d almost consider it as light entertainment.

    Good old witch hunting. Makes you feel a lot better about yourself. As long as you’re not the one being targeted, of course.

  16. Having just arrived back from Malawi, after been ‘advised’ to leave for writing a letter to the Nation newspaper about the police hunting down gays. I am not surprised by the sentence passed, there has been a huge homophobic backlash within the country. Previously the UK government and the EU have threatened to review their international aid to the country if the prosecution went ahead. I’d advise anyone interested in asking the UK government to take action contact DFID.

  17. I do not blame the African people for their ignorance. This is not Africa’s fault. This is the UK’s fault. These laws did not originate in Africa. The UK imposed these laws when they invaded Africa and taught the Africans these horrible, horrible laws. The UK should be working a round the clock to try and save these two men.

  18. This vicious homophobia is a child born of colonial missionaries and more recently decades of US style evangelism that has spawned and is still spreading evagelical churches across parts of Africa like a vicious rash, they are churches of various denominations but they work in alliance together to impose Christianity.
    Combine this with the influence of homophobic Islam in parts of Africa and we see how religion poisons everything just as Christopher Hitchens says.

  19. John(Derbyshire) 20 May 2010, 1:29pm

    Perhaps Bishop John Sentanu-Archbishop of York- could have a word with the Malawian government on behalf of Rowan williams and the Church of Engalnd? (Might even get the 14 years increased to the death penalty?)

  20. @ Darren:

    Stop being so patronizing. They do have a parliament, so they could change their Criminal code a hundred times already. No one is forcing them to implement these draconian laws but themselves.

    I blame a mix of organized religion, tribal traditions and populism.

  21. @ Lucius – the only one who is sounding patronising is yourself.

    The conviction by a Malawian court of Steven Monjeza and Tiwonge Chimbalanga on charges of homosexuality is the latest example of how, more than four decades after most African nations won their independence, the evils of colonialism continue to wreck lives.

    The two men face up to 14 years in jail under laws that were imposed on the people of Malawi by the British colonisers in the 19th century.

    Before the British came and conquered Malawi, there were no laws against homosexuality. These laws are a foreign imposition, they are not African at all. Despite independence, these alien criminalisations were never repealed.

    Today, the minds of many Malawians – and other Africans – remain colonised by the homophobic beliefs that were drummed into their forebears by the western missionaries who invaded their lands alongside the conquering imperial armies.

    The missionaries preached a harsh, intolerant Christianity, which has been so successfully internalised by many Africans that they now claim homophobia as their own culture and tradition.

    While many African leaders decry homosexuality as a “western disease” or a “white man’s import”, the truth is very different.

    Prior to colonisation, many tribal societies and kingdoms had a more relaxed attitude to same-sex relations than their subsequent colonial occupiers.

    As Rudi C Bleys documented in his book, The Geography of Perversion, the existence and, sometimes toleration, of same-sex acts was used by the colonising European nations to justify what they saw as their “civilising” mission.

    To them, homosexuality among the indigenous peoples was proof of their “barbarity” and confirmation of western theories of racial superiority.

    Homophobia in Africa is mostly a colonial imposition. But this is no excuse for these now-independent nations to perpetuate colonial-era anti-gay laws and attitudes.

    It is time to finish the African liberation struggle by ending the persecution of gay Africans.

  22. Mihangel apYrs 20 May 2010, 2:04pm

    @ Darren
    the UK left Malawi 46 years ago, almost a lifetime in these benighted places.

    When do we stop geting the guilt trip?

  23. @ Darren:

    But you are being patronizing. Why even mention colonization as a relevant fact if Malawi has been independent for 46 years now? It’s high time to stop throwing that around. The best way to treat Malawi as equals is to criticize them mercilessly, the same way we criticize the US. In any case, this self-imposed guilt trip regarding colonialism does nothing to help resolve the issue at hand.

    The damage by the missionary work has been done. I guess the only thing left is to target education to try and stomp out the ignorance in younger generations.

  24. Sister Mary Clarence 20 May 2010, 2:48pm

    Possibly representation in relation to the aid budget might be effective.

    This is issue that seems to dove tail nicely with today’s announcements about pressurising foreign governments to recognise equality

  25. Newspaniard 20 May 2010, 2:57pm

    A quick check on Wiki has revealed that the majority religion of Malawi is Catholic. Who’d a thunk it, I was POSITIVE that it HAD to be the Death Cult that describes itself as the ‘Religion if Peace’. That said, with the “religion of intolerance and boy buggery” having such a stranglehold on countries as Malawi, the sentence comes as little surprise.

  26. Organised religion (how/whenever introduced) has serious explaining to do. The flavour is irrelevant – the manipulation of people in the name of some deity is what it is all about ‘power’, nothing more or less and bigotry is just the instrument.
    As an african I often despair – they change one yoke of slavery for another almost seamlessly, but refuse to take responsibility for their own lives. Fertile soil indeed for monstrous abuse of power and flagrant abuse of human rights.
    I say cut off every cent of support and take the politicians to task. (easier said than done)

  27. 20 May 2010, 3:10pm

    Nick25, why should the onus be on the UK to provide them with asylum? Plenty of other countries in the EU and further afield who are perfectly entitled to offer them assistance. And Darren who thinks its because the UK colonised Africa…Malawi is predominantly Catholic, the British gave the Africans plenty of issues and f**k-ups but Catholicism wasn’t one of them. I would have thought a more effective way of dealing with corrupt backwards countries such as Malawi etc was to curb or stop the millions we pour into the coffers of these countries every year. The funding and donations invariably end up in the pockets of corrupt heads of state who have everything BUT the welfare of their citizens in their thoughts.

  28. Stop all aid to Malawi and let them and subsequently their ‘culture’ starve to death.
    Harsh? Not any harsher than they are.

  29. Yesterday I was talking to a friend (who also comments on this site) about the judge’s compulsions. He is a lower court judge and had no option but to find them guilty of homosexuality (which unfortunately, is a crime as per Malawi’s penal code). He was merely implementing the law.

    However, now I see that this judge was not only implementing the laws of the land – but was also expressing his own personal disgust and hatred towards the homosexuals. He has clearly demonstrating that he is a bigot and a homophobe – by ordering the maximum sentence to the gay couple. Such a person should be forever forbidden from visiting any civilized country on this planet Earth!!

  30. AN ABSOLUTE BLOODY DISGRACE! And this is one of the nations which Rowan Williams is afraid of alienating from the Anglican church because of the gay marrieage/gay priest/women bishops debate.
    We should drop the whole lot of them with their tribal prejudices and their inability to see further than their own backward culture.
    I’m ashamed to be an anglican!

  31. wow it’s almost as barbaric as sending a cancer sufferer her death. be careful before you write off a whole nation.

  32. Malawi’s penal code contradicts its Constitution.

    Bugs Bunny: What’s the difference between a mailbox and a hole in the ground?

    Malawi: I dunno.

    Bugs Bunny: M-m, I wouldn’t send you to post a letter.

  33. And once again the government of my country, South Africa, a close continental neighbour of Malawi, remains silent. For all our long history of colonialism, our post-apartheid trumpeting of freedom from oppression and the sanctity of human rights, Africa remains overwhelmingly a family of intolerant nations. Our long struggle to throw off the chains of imperialism and persecution has merely led us down the road of our own brand of tragic intolerance.

  34. Sarah E. Williams 25 May 2010, 11:33pm

    … such fear and inhumanity to man can’t be anything that would be done in the name of my God. Rits speak out. WHERE IS OUR ANGRY ROAR, AMERICA !!!

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