Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Release the two gay men, Human Rights Watch tells Zambian government

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James Mwape covered himself in a head sock while Philip Mubiana covered himself in a blank coat after appearing in court in a matter in which there are charged for unature sexual act
James Mwape covered himself in a head sock while Philip Mubiana
covered himself in a blank coat after appearing in court in a
matter in which there are charged for unature sexual act

Zambian authorities should dismiss all charges and release two men arrested for engaging in homosexual acts, Human Rights Watch said.

The police should immediately cease forensic anal examinations, which are intrusive, invasive and constitute cruel, inhuman, and degrading treatment in violation of international law.

On May 6, 2013, police in the Kapiri Mposhi district in central Zambia arrested James Mwansa and Phillip Mubiana in response to reports from neighbors that the two were engaging in homosexual acts. Both men were subjected to anal examinations without their consent by forensic doctors at the Kapiri Mposhi District Hospital, as part of the police investigation.

On May 8, the district magistrate formally charged Mwansa and Mubiana, and denied their request for a postponement even though they had no legal representation.

“It’s bad enough that Zambia wants to prosecute these two men for homosexual acts, but to subject them to invasive examinations is just outrageous,” said Monica Tabengwa, researcher in the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) Rights Program at Human Rights Watch.”The authorities should immediately drop the charges and free them, and stop bringing such cases.”

The arrest, detention, and prosecution of men suspected of homosexual acts is only one aspect of a looming human rights crisis for LGBT people in Zambia. Since April, politicians, religious, and community leaders have been carrying out vicious campaigns to vilify LGBT people, Human Rights Watch said.

Juliet Mphande, director of Lusaka-based LGBT organization Friends of Rainka, told Human Rights Watch that Mwansa and Mubiana, both 21, were coerced to confess to the allegations and have been deprived of adequate food and water in detention.

This is the second time the men have been arrested on similar charges, Human Rights Watch said. In April,the two men were arrested and detained for a week before being released on bail on a charge of engaging in “carnal knowledge against the order of nature,” as set out in the Zambian Penal Code.

The Zambian government is obligated under international law and its own constitution to respect the private lives and personal liberties of everyone in the country, and to cease prosecuting people for consensual adult sex, Human Rights Watch said.

Forensic anal examinations are used on suspected homosexuals in various countries to prove “habitual” anal penetration, Human Rights Watch said. The tests are intrusive, invasive, and abusive, and they violate the individual’s rights to integrity, dignity, and privacy. They are a cruel, inhuman, and degrading treatment that may amount to torture, violating the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights, the Convention Against Torture, and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, all of which Zambia has ratified.

The examinations have no forensic or evidentiary value for consensual homosexual acts. They are contrary to medical ethics as laid out by the World Medical Association and the United Nations Principles of Medical Ethics Relevant to the Role of Health Personnel, Particularly Physicians, in the Protection of Prisoners and Detainees Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman, or Degrading Treatment or Punishment.

Principle 4 of the UN principles states:

It is a contravention of medical ethics for health personnel, particularly physicians… to apply their knowledge and skills in order to assist in the interrogation of prisoners and detainees in a manner that may adversely affect the physical or mental health or condition of such prisoners or detainees and which is not in accordance with the relevant international instruments.

“Medical professionals participate in a miscarriage of justice when they subject people arrested for homosexuality to anal examinations,” Tabengwa said. “These invasive procedures are painful and humiliating and can be a form of torture. They should be banned immediately and evidence obtained should be declared inadmissible.”

The Zambian government should respect its own constitutional provisions guaranteeing non-discrimination and equality before the law by ordering an immediate halt to arrests and prosecutions based on suspicion of homosexual conduct. As part of its obligation to protect and promote human rights for all, the government should also repeal all laws criminalizing consensual sexual sex between adults, including Penal Code sections 155 (“Unnatural Offences”), 156 (“attempt to commit unnatural offences”), and 158(“indecent practices between persons of the same sex”), Human Rights Watch said. These provisions provide maximum penalties from 5 years to life in prison.

The recent efforts in Zambia to vilify LGBT people have publicly portrayed homosexuality as immoral and un-African. The government’s unwillingness to assert constitutional protections and ensure redress for discrimination and abuse of minorities, as well as the arbitrary arrest and prosecution of individuals suspected of homosexual acts, show the vulnerability of the country’s LGBT community.

On April 10, on Radio Phoenix, on a live radio panel discussion among religious leaders led by the former Orthodox Bishop Edward Chomba, another religious leader suggested that the most appropriate way to deal with gay people was death. The minister of youth and sports, Chishimba Kambwili, called in during the program and said defenders of the rights of LGBT people were “agents of the devil.” He also said that the Zambian government will be “introducing stiffer penalties against homosexuality,” instead of repealing the existing laws.

A police spokeswoman, Elizabeth Kanjela, told the media that homosexuality was a serious offense and appealed to the public to report anyone involved to the police. This statement followed a news report involving the attempt of four gay couples to register marriages during the Easter holidays. Same-sex marriage is an offense under Zambian law. The attempt to register same-sex-marriages provoked an outcry from several traditional and religious leaders who wrote a letter to the Daily Mail newspaper calling for “gays to be caged.” The LGBT community has never raised same-sex marriage as a priority in Zambia.

When the human rights defender Paul Kasokomona appeared on Muvi TV on April 6 to discuss LGBT and HIV issues, he was arrested as he left the television station. He was denied bail for five days, then finally released on April 11. He was charged with “soliciting in a public place for immoral purposes” and faces a court appearance on May 22. If convicted, Kasokomona may be imprisoned for one month or fined.

“The Zambian government should take immediate action against government officials who make discriminatory statements against LGBT people, or arrest or detain them,” Tabengwa said. “The attacks on LGBT people need to stop.”

33 COMMENTS

  1. Yes they have to release them.The two gentlemen didn’t harm anybody, they were just doing what makes them happy.I see no reason why another person should arrest another one all because of not agreeing with their lifestyle.

    • we have more important things to worry about than these two homos. they are polluting and damaging our cultural morals.

      we will not be swayed by such organization to bend our laws in order to satisfy their sickening behaviours.

    • What century is this country zambia in? do zambians use the same Gregorian calender like the rest of the world?growup man. you want to worry about what kind of sex people are having really?
      you accept aid money from Sir Elton John but don’t accept who he is what he believes in.
      shame on you
      Poor backward ignorant fools
      Those of you who go to south africa don’t say any of this nonsense in while there you will be locked up. That is a civilised country

    • ! Sex is not a human right. What is a human right is the right of association. These guys are not arrested because they are forbidden to associate. They are arrested because Zambian constitution forbids people to have sex with animals (bestiality), sex with a person of the same gender (homosexuality), sex with minors (pedophilia), sex with your parents (incest), and sex with non-consenting individual (rape).

      Sex is not a human right otherwise the government was supposed to provide it for all citizens and one would sue the government if they due to sex deprivation. This is why there are some sex acts that are outlawed for the good of society and preservation of humanity. Some sexual acts are abominations.

  2. Iwe walipena in zambia we dont accept such nonsense gay people should face the law. ukulatombana ku matako rubbish, sorry not in zambia.

  3. It is an offence in Zambia to engage in Homosexual sex act. The two animals arrested must be punished according to the laws of the land. Demanding release of criminals is stupid. Its like demanding that all thieves be released. Go to Saudi Arabia or United Arab Emirates, Yemen or Pakistan and demand that. I can assure you, you will be put to death by stoning…!!

    • Don`t use your religion or personal belief as a standard to judge others.We all have our own crosses to carry.I personally have no issues with them because it is their own choice and not mine.

  4. ‘Kings’ uli wakuti iwe…..Go and do bogo if you have nothing to comment on. NOT PA ZAMBIA AMA gay….. Ma rubbish

    • Iwe Kwacha rebased Phiri, what business is it of yours what these two human being do. Do you feed them? NO, are they your friends? No, so mind your bloody business

  5. Those two should be sent to mukobeko. If anything their heads should be chopped off.
    I dont think any normal person can support that. Those who are supporting it are equally insane. Ma rubbish

    • Mukupa, who made you judge and jury? When these guys were arrested, where they caught in the act, no!! What they do in private is their own business. Yes its against law but they were not caught braeking the law. Zambia is a country full of hypocrites. Most men and women are busy sleeping around cheating and spreading diseases openly. These people spreading diseases should be the ones prosecuted. This is country of ignorant fools who bang on about religion but are in fact the biggest sinners. They would rather gossip and worry about other people when it’s non of their business, a country of *****s. Learn to be progressive and productive.

    • I am a normal person with a wonderful family and I support this. Release these gentlemen. They were not harming anyone. You are the one who should be sent to prison for advocating the imprisoning innocent people and you should be sent to HELL for judging other people

    • Jailed so that they can enjoy their program with the mukobeko family band. In Zambia WE DONT ALLOW GAY PEOPLE. IF WE FIND THEM, THEN WE PUT THEM IN JAIL BECAUSE IT IS ILLEGAL.

    • Yo Dora. You are not in Zambia. You are in CANADA and Canada supports gay rights and it is also a country that does not abuse your rights. You live in a society with gay people. Have they caused you any harm or to anybody near you?The answer is NO! Leave the gay people alone!!!!! F=#kin Lo#$ser

  6. @Kings u’re the most foolish gay Zambian i have ever seen. Homosexual is not acceptable in Zambia. If u’re one of them, better u keep your mouth shut. We are not gonna tolerate such nuisance acts in Zambia.

    • I`m not gay my friend.I just don`t use my beliefs and religion as a reference point for what is right or wrong.I`m married to a very beautiful woman who has give me a very wonderful child.As long as what these people do doesn`t effect me i dont have a reason to hate them.It is their own life.They made a choice just like i have.

  7. Ifipondo fyamumatako. all countries have got their laws. In Zambia homosexual is illegal period, Kings go and hang youreself with your gay pro. Maybe you are admiring them.

    • Just speak for yourself.I just don`t understand why you people can harbor so much hatred against these harmless individuals while ignoring the rapists,killers and adulterers in your midst.

  8. Yawn
    Is there not more important things to report? this topic id becoming dull ba LT!!! What of stealing (also illeagal) which PF is doing on a daily basis!

  9. Sex is not a human right. What is a human right is the right of association. These guys are not arrested because they are forbidden to associate. They are arrested because Zambian constitution forbids people to have sex with animals (bestiality), sex with a person of the same gender (homosexuality), sex with minors (pedophilia), sex with your parents (incest), and sex with non-consenting individual (rape).

    Sex is not a human right otherwise the government was supposed to provide it for all citizens and one would sue the government if they due to sex deprivation. This is why there are some sex acts that are outlawed for the good of society and preservation of humanity. Some sexual acts are abominations.

  10. What is this so called Human Rights Watch? We will ask Mr. Edgar Lungu to deport them coz i don’t thing they are Zambians if they can’t speak in the same line. We don’t want people who are selling our country of cheap money. Zambia is a Christian Country and where in the Bible does it encourage homosexual. Please create a country for these people unlike bringing confusions. Regards

  11. HOW CAN ANY BODY OR A GROUP OF ANY BODIES DEMAND THE RELEASE OF OF WRONG DOERS IN A SOVEREIGN COUNTRY? IS ZAMBIA STILL A COLONY? ZAMBIA HAS IT’S OWN SOVEREIGN LAWS WHICH MUST BE FOLLOWED BY ANY PERSON RESIDENT IN ZAMBIA. IF ANYON SAY NO AID DON’T WORRY- WE CAN BORROW MONEY FROM CHINA WITH NO STRINGS ATTACHED.

  12. @Kings we know you are the same person replying to who ever is against gay rights you are just changing names stupid *****….find a life you fool. Come what may causing what might not gay rights will never be a right in Zambia period. Go on change your name again for you stupid reply.

  13. gay ass butt worshipers dont deserve to be part of our society.we need to cut off their organs if we are to protect our children and our childrens children from these pervets.since they cant reproduce, they can only recruit people to join their sickening society of faggots.we as zambians need to stand up against them.who would want to hear their twelve year old son coming back from school 1 day and saying mom im gay?thats where we are headed to if we give our rectums to these anus fanatics.

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