Drawing from Uganda: Zimbabwean Chiefs may advocate for the slaughtering of LGBTQI

Gertrude Pswarayi
Posted February 9, 2010 from Zimbabwe

ZIMBABWE: The Government controlled newspaper, the SUNDAY NEWS (07-13 February 2010, page 3), reports that chiefs are lobbying for the restoration of their powers to enable them to bring to an end "alien concepts such as homosexuality".

The President of the Zimbabwe Chief's Council, Chief Fortune Charumbira is reported to have said that traditional leaders expected a constitution with a bill of rights completely interwoven with the country's cultural values.

"...it is disheartening to note that there were people who were openly advocating for the smuggling and inclusion of homosexuality in the constituion. People should resist all attempts by misguided citizens to smuggle same sex marriages. Even the platform to discuss such issues should not be accirded," says Chief Charumbira.

Chief Charumbira adds, "In Uganda they have passed a law that says homosexuals should be killed and we will soon advocate for that if the call continue. We will not sit back and watch while the country is being highjacked. Homosexuality is alien to Zimbabwe. It is taboo."

The report in the Sunday News comes at a time when Zimbabwe is struggling to make meaningful progress to draft a new constitution that is people driven.

Human Rights activists on the ground are currently lobbying for the inclusion of the phrase 'sexual orientation' under the non discrimination clause to ensure that LGBTQI persons' rights are recognised in the new constitution. However, critics are saying the inclusion of the phrase may result in the majority of people voting NO during the referendum.

A similar incident happened in 2000 when the country voted "NO" when they did not agree on a minor aspect in the constitution.

The article that appeared in the Sunday News is part of a media campaigned aimed at ensuring that the new constitution does not protect sexual minorities.

Comments by Chief Charumbira raise alarm to the LGBTQI community in the country. Many fear that the governement will spearhead a campaign to eliminate sexual minorities while using the Uganda case as a good example.

Chief Charumbira described homosexuality as "a social wrong that progressive minds should resist formibadably adding that such elements were a disgrace to nation builing."

LGBT Rights

Comments 3

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  • Jade Frank
    Feb 12, 2010
    Feb 12, 2010

    Hi Gertrude,

    Thank you for sharing this article. It is frightening to see the ripple effect of implications for Uganda's anti-gay bill and what it could mean for the LGBTQI community in Africa and around the world.


    We must continue to speak out and tell the world what's happening.

    Hugs, Jade

  • Gertrude Pswarayi
    Feb 13, 2010
    Feb 13, 2010

    Jade, Indeed, Uganda has set a bad example and it is unfortunate that some African leaders and traditional leaders are not seeing the effect this has to our society and in particular the advancement of the MDGs. Yesterday, there were reports of gay men in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe who were arrested on charges of sodomy. I will report on this once i gather enough facts. Gertrude

  • Jade Frank
    Feb 13, 2010
    Feb 13, 2010

    Thank you Gertrude for being a voice for these injustices!