Yet another round of anti-gay hysteria in Zambia. Clergy and politicians in the Southern African nation—which boasts a 16 percent HIV rate and is one of the world's poorest nations—are "outraged" after international donors suggested the mineral-rich Southern African nation should relax its harsh anti-gay laws.
Two Pentecostal bishops said gays were "unacceptable" in Zambian society, reports Behind the Mask.
"Assemblies of God Bishop Joshua Banda has advised the donor community to channel their funds to development programmes rather than supporting practises such as homosexuality that are alien to the Zambian society. And Bishop Joe Imakando of Bread of Life Church International said homosexuals and lesbians had no room in society because Zambia had been declared a Christian nation. In an interview in Lusaka yesterday Bishop Banda said it was unacceptable for some donor agencies to be considering funding such acts, which were of little benefit to the majority of Zambians. He condemned the decision by some donor countries such as the Swedish government coming out in the open and supporting such acts, which were against the traditional values of the country."
You may recall in March 2009, Vice President George Kaduna told members of parliament and journalists to "report any homosexuals" to the police.
Meanwhile: Zambia's three dominant political parties reject calls to decriminalize gay sex and call the suggestion an "abomination", reports Lusaka Times.
"The MMD and United Party for National Development (UPND) said separately in Lusaka ythat Zambia was declared a Christian nation and the issue of homosexuality had no room in this society. But the Patriotic Front (PF) said it had not dealt with the matter because it was concentrating on more important issues. MMD acting spokesperson Mike Mulongoti said the ruling party could not embrace or support the gay rights because the party was founded on Christian norms. 'Zambia is declared a Christian nation and anything that is unChristian and alien to our society is deemed to be an abomination,' Mr Mulongoti said. ... PF spokesperson Given Lubinda said his party would not preoccupy itself with less pressing issues because it was currently more concerned with the welfare of the people."
And they're doing a heckuva job, too. In recent weeks the Zambian government is reeling after human rights agencies described its prisons as "death traps" of HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis, where inmates were "packed like pigs" and "commonly stripped naked and held ...in ankle-to-calf-high water contaminated with their own excrement."
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