During a debate around same-sex marriage in England and Wales, the leader of Northern Ireland’s Evangelical Alliance has claimed that being attracted to the same-sex is a choice.

Peter Lynas appeared on the Nolan Show on BBC Radio Ulster alongside PinkNews and Out4Marriage founder Benjamin Cohen, and claimed during the debate, which was primarily around Northern Ireland’s lack of same-sex marriage, that many gay people would admit that they chose to have same-sex attractions.

During the debate, My Lynas claimed that there is “definitely a choice element” in sexuality, and that a “chunk” of the gay community would testify that they chose to be attracted to the same sex.

Mr Cohen responded to say: “Nobody chooses to be different”, and argued that Northern Ireland’s reluctance to introduce same-sex marriage was putting religious organisations such as the Unitarians, Quakers, Liberal and Reform Judaism at a disadvantage, as religious leaders cannot currently conduct civil partnerships.

The Evangelical Alliance leader was also rather thrown when the programme’s host Stephen Nolan asked him whether he thought he might one day wake up and find he “fancied a bit of gay sex”.

On the fact that Northern Ireland will be the only part of the UK without equal marriage, Mr Lynas said it was “important” that it had “chosen” not to introduce it, and that politicians still had doubts about it.

He also claimed that “the state has turned marriage into a consumer product,” and that any “style” of marriage was now available through the “privatisation” of the institution.

Same-sex marriage will take effect at 00:01 this evening, 29 March in England and Wales, and Scotland’s same-sex marriage bill will come into force some time in the autumn.

Nothern Ireland currently has no plans to introduce same-sex marriage.

The full debate is available to listen to below.