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Nigeria's Parliament Passed a Bill Criminalising Gay Marriage

Nigeria's Parliament on 2 June 2013 passed a bill criminalizing gay marriage, making it punishable with a 14-year prison term.

Jun 3, 2013 17:48 IST
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Nigeria's ParliamentNigeria's Parliament on 2 June 2013 passed a bill criminalizing gay marriage, making it punishable with a 14-year prison term. However, speculation is rife whether President Goodluck Jonathan would sign the bill into law. The country's lower house, the House of Representatives, followed the action of the Senate and endorsed the bill.

In November 2011, the country's Senate passed the bill with an overwhelming majority with Senate President David Mark saying that homosexuality was foreign to Nigerian culture. Included in the bill are sections that make it unlawful to register gay associations and make public show of same-sex relationships indirectly or directly. This section attracts 10-year jail term.

To this end, there was hardly a dissenting voice throughout the deliberations leading to the bill except few gay association members who appeared during public hearings to oppose the move. United States and Britain have threatened to cut funding for the country's AIDS and HIV control programme if the President finally signs the bill into law.

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