MP Kaluma proposes life sentence for homosexuals
Homabay Town MP George Peter Kaluma has reignited the debate on homosexuality by proposing a bill that would impose a life sentence on those convicted of engaging in homosexuality and other unnatural sexual acts.
Currently, the law stipulates a 14-year jail term. Same-sex activity is prohibited under the Penal Code 1930, which criminalizes acts of ‘gross indecency’ and ‘carnal knowledge against the order of nature’.
Kaluma’s bill aims to consolidate Articles 162 and 165 of the penal code, and Articles 45 (1) and (2), which outlaw homosexuality and other unnatural sexual acts. It also seeks to introduce legislation against the promotion of homosexuality.
“If we do not stop the promotion, we risk losing the family unit as we know it,” Kaluma said in an interview with NTV digital.
In his letter to the Speaker of the National Assembly Moses Wetangula, Kaluma stated that the proposed law intended to further the provisions of Article 45 (2) of the Constitution of Kenya and protect the family.
He argued that the current legislation is rarely enforced, making it necessary to increase the penalty for those convicted of engaging or promoting same-sex activity to imprisonment for life or a commensurate sentence.
“There is no right to be LGBTQ, but we know these are still Kenyans. We want to create a law that provides room for rehabilitation where possible, but is also strict not to erode our societal morals,” said Kaluma.
Homosexuality is still illegal in 33 African countries, including Kenya, and LGBTQ+ people face widespread discrimination and persecution.
In 2019, the High Court upheld laws criminalizing homosexual acts between consenting adults, a petition filed by three Kenyan organizations that work to protect the rights of LGBTQ+ people.
The groups argued that the criminalization of same-sex conduct violates the rights to equality, non-discrimination, human dignity, security, privacy, and health, all protected under Kenya’s constitution.
Retired President Uhuru Kenyatta rejected any gay agenda at a global population conference held in Nairobi in 2019. “We will not accept practices that are in conflict with our cultures,” he said.
Kaluma’s proposal is likely to reignite the debate on homosexuality, which has been ongoing for many years.