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US urges Zambia to drop the appeal against the acquittal of gay rights activist Kasonkomona

Headlines US urges Zambia to drop the appeal against the acquittal of gay...

Paul Kasonkomona
Paul Kasonkomona(R)

The Government of the United States has said that is disappointed by the decision of the Government of the Republic of Zambia to appeal the case of Paul Kasonkomona for allegedly “soliciting for immoral purpose.”

In a statement released to the media today, the US Government urged the Government to drop its appeal case as the Zambian constitution guaranteed the freedom of expression.

Last month Magistrate Lameck Ng’ambi acquitted a human rights activist on charges of promoting homosexuality. Paul Kasonkomona was charged with “soliciting for immoral purposes” after arguing for gay rights on a MUVI TV in April 2013.

Magistrate Lameck found that the state had failed to prove its case.

Mr Kasonkomona told AFP his acquittal was a “landmark judgement” and vowed to keep to speak out “for the rights of all Zambians”.

Below is the full statement

EMBASSY OF THE

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

LUSAKA, ZAMBIA

NR/1016/03/06/14
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT: Janet Deutsch
March 6, 2014 Public Affairs Officer
Phone: 357000

United States Urges Dropping of Appeal Against Paul Kasonkomona

Lusaka – The Government of the United States is disappointed by the decision of the Government of the Republic of Zambia to appeal the case of Paul Kasonkomona for allegedly “soliciting for immoral purpose.” When acquitting Mr. Kasonkomona, Magistrate Lameck Ng’ambi issued an eloquent statement about the importance of free speech in a democracy. The Zambian constitution also guarantees this fundamental right.

We urge the Zambian Government to drop its appeal in this case. Freedom of speech is a fundamental right to be respected and embraced.

The U.S. Department of State on February 27, 2014 released the 2013 Human Rights Report on Zambia and other countries around the world. This report details further restrictions on the freedom of speech and other human rights concerns. The report can be found online at: www.HumanRights.gov.

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72 COMMENTS

  1. ala! i thought that human rights report on Zambia was about Sata insulting his ministers, sending PF carrying pangas to go chop people to death, other Sata evils etc,,, ala! so it was about these bum busting lovers

    • the issue here is not about free speech but soliciting for immoral purposes.

      Govt has the right to appeal just like kasonkomona would have appealed if the decision went against him.

      whats wrong with the United States of Amnesia (USA)?

    • BUT SINCE WHEN DID AFRICA IN GENERAL AND ZAMBIA IN PARTICULAR TELL WESTERN WORLD IN GENERAL AND US OF A IN PARTICULAR TO ABANDON THE LAW THAT FORBIDS MARRYING MORE THAN ONE WIFE? IF NOT WHY THEN SHOULD AMERICA DEEP ITS NOSE INTO ZAMBIA’S LAWS? I THINK CHINA CAN MORE THAN AFFORD TO LEND ZAMBIA WITHOUT STRINGS ATTACHED.

    • On this occasion US please mind yo business and let Zambia’s common law take its natural justice…
      The constitution which is affecting all Zambians, u want to ignore, poor economic issues that are affecting us U don’t wana consider, please, spare us…

    • The church should take a leading role by providing meaningful debate and not leave everthing to politicians.

  2. The provisions of the Zambian law allow for appeal by either party in a court case if they are not satisfied.

    If Kasonkomona was found guilty, he would have also appealed.

    So Americans must shut up

    • @cindy
      they can take their money,,,,( i would have used that bashilubemba`s expression to govt to take their money away to avoid confusion)
      These chaps (IMF, World bank etc) are so selective they must also go and push Russia on gay rights… and since humanity must free and do as the wish, i want to marry 3 white women(who are already willing) here in europe and IMF & all other `human rights` groups must support because i was born with DNA to love more one white woman

    • @ Ndobo,
      Iam just wondering how far government is going to go trying to put up face to the Zambian people, Africa, by flocking these guys btwn jail houses and court apearances whilst avoiding Sanctions from IMF and America! I cant wait for the last show which am sure will be…………. oh c’mon we all know whose gonna be dont kubebed!

    • So what does Zambia do? Is poverty such a curse? God deal with the Infidels in the West. Why cant they give this chap a citizenship in the USA

  3. The US Embassy should pre-occupy itself with issues which will bring economic prosperity to Zambia. Why the deafening silence over the Lower Zambezi? Opposition cadres were being butchered by PF Police but the embassy was quiet. Opposition were being denied their rights to hold rallies, their leaders were arrested and detained and locked up in cells. What was surprising is the fact that the US embassy never expressed their disgust at the blatant police brutality. I hope the embassy is embarrassed that the money they campaigned for has not lived up to expectation. Mr Ambassador sir, we need a constitution!! And we also want our Kwacha to gain strength.

  4. The government is using the right procedure!!!!!!! Its a fact the leverage that the USA (because of the rise of CHINA) has over Zambia has declined so I do not think this will result into anything serious yet.

    • Thats the trouble when you allow the press and judiciary to operate independently. There should be no absolute freedom.

  5. Frothing at the mouth with so much hate; by it’s very name, ‘human rights’ does encompass all the freedoms from freedom of speech to political freedom or religious freedom etc. So your point, @ndobo, is moot. As for @gayrights, while both the defendant and prosecuting party have rights to appeal, having already been adjudicated and disposed of by the magistrate it should be the end of it. The man was acquitted, by essence he was found ‘innocent of the crimes he was accused of. Now the US Embassy statement is merely a reminder of the fact the Zambia adheres to the laws human rights as they are a signatory to this international pact. Home based organizations have states the same. It’s merely the homophobic nature some individuals, evidenced here as well as in the country. get over it.

    • baba if you calling my small light comment hate,,, go to nigeria where two gays have convicted as we speak by the court of law charged 20000 dollars each will be canned publicily

  6. I wonder if the US government would protect the freedom of speech of an American who was advocating for terrorism and what they would do to Zambia if we supported that individual? am sure most of us know the answer to that. HAHAHAHA………

  7. USA federal govt has alot of cases with states such as Utah,north Dakota and other Republican strongholds which strongly oppose gay marriage.some court cases have been ruled in favor of the federal govt while others against it,and the federal government have appealed,so what’s wrong for the Zambian government to appeal.the USA embassy is being hypocritical here.

    • Yes, there are countless cases where US gov is contesting state decisions on gay rights- that’s why Cali had the whole prop 8 protest recently. However, the difference is NO ONE, has been arrested in the US for coming out gay, fighting for gay rights . If you know of any such instances, please, by all means, point me to them. The case in Zambia, violated Mr. Kasonkomona’s rights by holding him in jail for prolonged time with no charges and then when they actually did, the court at the first instance throw out the case because his accusers could not substantiate their claims ergo he was released.

  8. I am not a fan of PF Government but unfortunately the US Government is offside on this issue – not that I am homophobic – NO. By appealing, the government is simply following procedure, everyone has right to appeal. What the embassy should be advocating for is to ensure that Zambia gets a good constitution, put money on the table for the referendum, campaign that such laws which infringe on human rights are abolished.

    • In that constitution there maybe human rights approval for gay people which I would not have a qualm about. See my earlier point above. Consenting adults doing what they want to do in their own privacy doesn’t bother me a bit. They can shower together, shave each other, kiss in their own private time doesn’t bother me any more. Just the other day two guys were kissing in a top London club and everybody was gay about it and this is not a gay club. All you living in the DIASPORA except those in the other diaspora like Iraq, Amman and you know – have seen gays go about free with their lives and we are all cool about it. I don’t go to bed each night thinking why are they gay? so won’t bother me a bit. If we disapprove so much and it churns our stomachs the brethren we can go back to Zed.

    • @one hit wonder
      only gays rights will be or might be included?? what of us black (African) polygamies by nature like me who are born with DNA to love more than one woman??,

    • Hey Ndobo, you know i am not the right person to answer that one as I, too am a hot blooded manimal and sexuality in my life starts with ‘The scent of a woman’ but then again this is perhaps not the forum for it. But be carefure! Cindy May not like your question 😉 just thinking aloud.

    • Hey Ndobo, you know i am not the right person to answer that one as I, too am a hot blooded manimal and sexuality in my life starts with ‘The scent of a woman’ but then again this is perhaps not the forum for it. But be carefure! Cindy May not like your question -just thinking aloud.

    • heeheheheheheeheh..why cherry pick sweet cindy in your loud thinking? she an african woman firm believer in freedom of human rights for all, so she will understand those of us born with DNA to love extra…..hehehehehh,,, good night bro!!

  9. Forces, political correctness, economical migration, tolerance call it what you may. I will never understand it but it will never affect me anymore. I live with people who have tried to tell me that those people have no choice in their sexuality and I have also put my points across which seemed harsh towards their soft stance. I will leave each one of us to be judged by our sins great and small with God being the Supreme Judge. As a Christian nation Zambia is more sinful today than ever before! You talk of Ministers walking into parliament with juju in a Christian nation. Every major open market has nganga’s selling all kind of charms in a Christian nation. If the bible is to go by, then the DEVIL is at his highest peak in re-colonising a country that has declared herself a Xtian State

  10. At times I laugh at the hypocrisy of the so called developed countries promoting gay rights in Africa. One would think that gays and lesbians in these countries have a field day, NO!! They’re facing same issues of rejection. The gay community even is some of the developed countries don’t have equal rights (e.g access to certain services) as their heterosexual counterparts. Why is it that most gay people in their countries are hiding and are not enjoying their relationships openly?

    • @the chosen one. I think your country flag should be Angolan and not The UK mate. Gay people are marrying in churches and are now considered man and man as would be man and wife by law in Engy mate. It doesn’t affect me any more. I will go and shag my type they go shag their type.

    • @the chosen one. I think your country flag should be Angolan and not The UK mate. Gay people are marrying in churches and are now considered man and man as would be man and wife by law in Engy mate. It doesn’t affect me any more. I will go and [email protected] my type they’ll go [email protected] their type. Is that better LT? It’s a hot subject so relax your censorship…..

  11. I was born of a man and woman, i don’t understand why the likes of kasokomona and the ambassador want to change that fact.

  12. I’ve never understood gay love or indeed these delusional americans with their warped values.Whats there to love about another hairy chest?

  13. Which Zambian constitution upholds gay rights. Even in USA not all states have accepted. Homo is not a right it is an extreme way of using the implement from its intended purpose. It is as good as smoking weed.

    • i like yo way of thnking,museveni tod americans similar to wat u tokn about concening homo characters.wat baffles me much is y usa,denmark n others get pinch most wen u tok against homosexuality,u kil sam one they wil ignore u but u tok against homohabili then trouble, wats special with the wrong act? the chaps are just mad,we shudnt allow this in zambia.people are dying in nigeria bali ziii, uganda enacts law against homo they cut aid. no no no no………

  14. This is non sense, what right does the USA have in Zambia.? Just because they are morally perverse does not mean they should paint the whole world …what about our rights to a moral society. They are practicing slavery in the name of human rights

  15. USA is a spent force. your position of world policeman has long been vanquished. even ka Putin can go with imPunity across the border and terrorise Ukraine while you watch from the sidelines with big eyes like a grasshopper. so who are you mathar fakar, to tell us to embrace gay swine? in our country animals dont have rights. gay *****s are lower. you can shove Kasonkomona up your bleached pink ass ba shi!it

  16. I`m with the USA on this one.It is folly for the government to appeal in this case.Give Kasonkomona a break !!!

    • Kasonkomona should give Zambia a break and leave us alone and go the the US or Europe or better still just die. We dont want this foolishness of gays

  17. Zambians are indeed one hell of a lot with a god damn forked mind. They have no qualms committing stinking, dangerous and illegal adultery, fornication and stealing etc but would rather stir up a storm in a tea cup because of two consenting adults of whatever gender loving each other. Just how trivial could a people be! Don’t you have more important things to do, like burning down the Muchinga jungle or indeed stopping the kwacha sliding into worthlessness?

    • If you really think about it, Zambia has actually been nice to these people. The problem comes in when these guys start pushing for rights. I personally don’t discriminate against gays, but for them to start blowing out like this as if there were ever oppressed in the first place. Lets face it,..we know who the gay guys are and we know where they live. The truth is no one has ever snitched on them. They should realise that the better they do their thing in private the better, after all, even sex between man and woman is not done in public. Paul Ka shani uko should just drop it and Govt should just let him off as there are more SERIOUS issues in zed to look at. The US can go and mind their own business too.

  18. if one speaks in the USA that he supports Al Qaida, will the USA govt say the person is just excersing his or her freedom of speach? ignore the USA on this one. this ichipuba Paul Kasonkomona should be locked up for supporting something that our culture does not support. full stop.

  19. UNTIL THE ANTI-GAY ACTIVISTS TELL US WHERE & HOW ADAM & EVE GOT THEIR GRAND CHILDREN, I WILL ALWAYS HAVE THE VIEW THAT GOD’S INTERPRETATION OF MORALS PERHAPS DEPENDS ON THE TIMES & THE TYPE OF EACH GENERATION.

    IF ADAM & EVE ALLOWED THEIR KINDRED TO SLEEP WITH THEIR BROTHERS & SISTERS TO GIVE THEM GRAND KIDS, WHO ARE WE TO JUDGE GAYS?

  20. The U.S of A should mind its own business and i was going to curse it and tell ’em to fvck off …butt fvck it.

  21. Yes drop the case , and ZAMBIA being a poverty stricken country, we need to encourage same SEX love to avoid population growth that we cant even sustain

  22. The US is now speaking like the Dragon and has become an oppressor of nations!
    It’s all about power and not that they really care about the plight of LGBTs who are worse than do.gs!

  23. Human Rights:
    >Every person on this planet has every right to enjoy their freedom and self autonomy.Others choose to drink alcohol and some take drugs because its their personal choice. More equitable, criminals, thugs, police, politicians,lawyers, doctors and everything, it’s self will.
    •¥• However, in having all these individualized autonomy, choice and will mentioned above ^; it will be vital for the law to be in discourse because these choices should NOT INTERFERE with other citizens.

    Education;
    In summary, education should be encouraged so that people can fully understand what Human Rights are. In what ways does Gay peoples choices affect you as an individual?Do Gay peoples STOP anyone from expressing their human rights and freedoms?
    The U.S.A. is Right and lets respect…

    • ••••each other as humans for the best of Humanity. There is NO economic loss if one is straight or Gay and that’s Reality.
      A can do as he/she pleases, as long it DOESN’T interfere with the self autonomy of B. Therefore, I can do whatever I want for it doesn’t interfere with ANYBODY.

  24. Zambia is not part of the US, Kasonkomona is HIV he was paid money by US homos so he got it. I thought it was very clear as to why the learned government was appealing. The homo and HIV Kasonkomona was on an American campain to turn Zambians into homos and not expressing himself. Let the US take Kasonkomona or to Scotland.

  25. @skeloton your comments are disappointing.i begin to think you don’t understand what’s at play here.Our human manual the bible is clear on such stupids issues as such the contrary can only be the devils work.We don’t want to ever hear kasonkomona again..Govt should appeal.

    • *Chinyama,
      Not everyone is Christian even if they live in Zambia and we should not argue about that.
      However, today the world has significantly changed, Gay people can no longer hide themselves, but to be honest of who they are. Unless if you been gay before, otherwise we don’t know what they feel and go through.
      The best we do is investigate why some people choose to be gay, only then, with empirical evidence can we understand what is really happening to our friends who are different.
      Yes, Zambia’ tradition does not allow such, but people should be educated and find out why this is so, not just forsaking others. Remember, they are also people like any of us, but sexually different. Chinyama, look at the kwacha and economy not demonizing your fellow human beings. Hope you understand.

  26. PilatoPont
    We have not gone to Americans to stop them prosecuting people that do go against their laws . In their own country bigamy is a crime because that is how they want to live. They should also leave us alone.Which is better ?
    (1) To marry people of the same sex?
    (2) To marry more than one woman?
    Kasonkomona is gay and sponsored by foreign powers. Leave Zambia and go to America. No ownder our kwacha is depreciating at this rate because of chaps like Kasonkomona.
    Go to hell Kasonkomona with your dollars. We will not exchange our soverign with dollars.
    These chaps Americans are not concerned with our constitution making process because it does not support their stupidity gaysm. Do not expect support from them. Let us fight on our own.

  27. Look at this chap kasonkomona. He looks dead while walking. Evil chap because he is HIV positive he wants to kill our morals. MV tv don’t allow such chaps in the name of freedom of speech. If this comes again I will stop watching your MV Tv and trash that ka decoda in the latrine.

  28. Americans would have supported our constitution making process with vigour had we put a clause to support gays.
    Infact there should be a clause to restrain this American crap to stop people of the same sex marryinng each other. In zambia we do not have political will from our politician to publicly denounce this like Zimbabwe has done by calling them dogs. This is why I like Mugabe.

  29. AND PEOPLE BELIEVED THAT SATA WAS FOR GAYS, AND DE- CAMPAIGNED HIM ON THOSE LINES IN 2011. TODAY HIS GOVT IS APPEALING AGAINST SUCH PRACTICES, WHAT DO YOU HAVE TO SAY.

  30. Lets us as Zambians who believe in the Lord Jesus Christ tell these agents of the devil that we do not like this demonic act of gays and same sex foolishness. Let the USA be disappointed all they like. Let them take the gays to there country. What nonsense, them telling us what and what not to appeal. It is our right to appeal the ruling.

  31. It is sad that most people commenting on this topic do not even understand what Kasonkomona was accused of. Kasonkomona is not gay although he is HIV positive. His argument was that people who are gay should not be discriminated against if HIV and AIDS are to be curbed. The point made was that in prisons for example, people perform homosexual acts but condoms are not provided because ‘we are a christian nation’ – people get infected and end up passing on the virus to females when these same people are released from prison. What would you rather have; more people affected by HIV and AIDS or provide condoms to reduce the infection rates? Dr Kaseba made the same point, but she was not arrested or charged. As a country we should be mature, and accept divergent views and opinions.

  32. Divergent views is not breaking the law. If something is classified as a crime you do not have to go on TV and start defending it. This friend of yours has no interest of this country at heart. He is a paid chap trying to represent the interest of his paymaster. The practic of gaysim is so bad to most Zambian people that the so called divergent views become un acceptable. We have not gone to America to discuss divergent views on polyganism. Why should it be only here in Zambia. Why should it take the whole American Chief to discourage the appeal? What is wrong kanshi with Americans? Even their presidents have openly come to Zambia & other African countries to compel them recognise the gays. It makes me now believe that they the main funders of American Programs.

  33. Let me comment on this one. Yes USA Zambia is upholding its laws, because in the laws of Zambia, marriage between same sex people is a crime. In this case government is not accusing Kasonkomona of not breaking the law, he has to answer just like a thief must answer for stealing. Indeed am also disappointed in the US embassy, why are the USA so concerned about petty issues like gays in Africa and not about the well being of many Africans. Where did gay start from, it should have been in our constitution long back even in the days of colonialism. Why now and how has it brought development to the USA that we should emulate from? Search on the life that gays live and how much they are prone to HIV and other diseases, lets not be like little children Zambians, learn to think through matters.

  34. EVEN ANIMALS DON’T PRACTICE THE FILTHY SHAMEFUL HOMO ACTS WHICH ARE CONDEMNED BY THE BIBLE.
    ZAMBIA SHOULD INTRODUCE THE DEATH PENALTY FOR HOMOSEXUAL ACTS AND GET RID OF SCUM ONCE AND FOR ALL

    • Let see.
      A man having sex with another man, because they like eachother and they enjoy it, should carry the death penalthy. they didn’t hurt anyone, they didn’t steal money, they didn’t infring on anyones freedom.

      What should then be the punishment be for rape? When someone is violently forced to sex they don’t want. Should the rapist get 2 death sentences?
      How about murder. Should that be 3 death sentences?

      Or do you actually think that two men having sex in their bedroom is a worse crime than murder, rape, corruption, grand theft, terrorism and state treason?

      Are you a retard?
      I am sure you are not a christian anyway. Jesus would certainly not hold the murderer, the rapist and the terrorist above a gay man.

  35. Government should go ahead and appeal against such abominations. In United Sates they have banned polygamy, so are we going to say they are abrogating human rights, since a person can marry as many wives as he wishes?
    Don’t impose your dirty culture on Zambia. We have our own morals to protect

  36. If the man was not found guilty of the offence I have no problem. But the law to cage these gays should remain a crime so that those proved to have committed it are punished full stop

  37. I URGE THE US TO FOSTER AND PROTECT THE PROPER HUMAN RIGHTS OF AMERICAN BLACKS INSTEAD OF TALKING ABOUT THE BEHAVIOUR OF DEPRAVED SICK PEOPLE WHO PRACTICE UNNATURAL ACTS.
    IN THIS REGARD I AM DISPPOINTED ABOUT OBAMA WHO HAS ALSO TAKEN UP THE CAUSE OF WHITE LIBERALS AND FORGOTTEN ABOUT THE REAL SUFFERING OF DEPRIVED AMERICANS .
    SHAME ON YOU WHITE LIBERALS!

  38. Paul Kasonkomona is not GAY if i may point out to all you BIGOTS commenting on here. it happens he got infected with HIV virus while prison-hence the reason he advocating for condom distribution in zambian prisons.
    Christine Kaseba she did express these same views a couple of months ago- she was not detained or arrested.
    The gay comminity is being used as a scapegoat by zambian goverment by progating this stupid sodomy colonial laws.

  39. If Jesus walked the earth he would say to the gay people ….I do not condemn you either,go and sin no more. Why should we condemn gays when we don’t condemn liars,formicators,adulterers,drunkards etc..how did you decide that being gay was worse than the other sins.Stop being hypocrites.Jesus loves everyone and died for all mankind.Its not our place to judge

  40. ex- moma
    You too is a lier. Check your facts.
    (1) How many times have we condmned our own president for lying to the Zambian people that he will give them this and that?

    (2) How many times have we condmned prostitutes in our community to the extent of un dressing them by in the public by our call boys? Again they have been saved by your stupid idea of Human ponono or is it rights.

    If you have nothing to write about please shut up.

    Think of your son bring another man that they are getting married? To an American this is normal but us in Africa it is not. We interact with number a of Americans . Some of them admire our culture so much. They regret some of the things which happen in their own countries but which you want to copy.

    • @kavuyi you simply a ingorant bigot.
      get you facts right before you show your ignorance or just SHUT UP!
      Sexaul oriataion is neither african or western ” culture”but aslo its not a culture or sub culture. “Homosexuality is simply a normal variation in the human condition. It occurs in every culture, in every age, and although a majority are heterosexual, just as some people are left handed, a minority is homosexual in their orientation.There is evidence that homosexual behavior occurs far less frequently in some cultures than it does in the West. Obviously, differing cultures would evidence differing degrees of secrecy regarding sexual behavior and there have been no widely,accepted surveys of homosexuality in non-Western countries, so hard evidence is almost impossible to come by.

  41. Zambia is the sovereign nation and we do not need America to interfere into our business. Kasonkomona is a Zambian and committed this crime in Zambia why should America talk about this issue.Talk about BOKO HARRAM in Nigeria if you are superpower stop the killing.

    • Iwe, if Zambia is a sovereign nation why do we beg the US and other nations for monies to run the country?

      If you borrow 10,000 kwacha for me to pay for your education, but spend the money on beer, I have every right to criticize you and to ensure that my money is well spent.

      The US and other nations spends millions annually on good governance in Zambia. Imprisoning HIV activists is not good governance.

      Their criticism and condemnation is spot on. Thank you, Mr. Young for speaking out.

  42. Zambia, wake up! Why is the government wasting money prosecuting a man for expressing his ideas, a right that is enshrined in our constitution?

    Kasonkomna went on TV to talk about strategies that can mitigate HIV. One of these strategies involves addressing homosexual sex. Big deal.

    It’s true that there are issues of national importance we could be dealing with right now. Instead we are focusing our energy, time, and limited resources on nabbing someone who was simply having a discussion.

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