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Nigerian LGBTQ Activist Quits Hunger Strike At National Assembly After Two Days [Video]

The activists had said he would be at the National Assembly in his one-man protest on an empty stomach till his request is granted.

An advocate for the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer persons in Nigeria, Victor Emmanuel, has ended a hunger strike which he started and swore to keep until the country’s ban on same-sex marriage is repealed.

Nigerian LGBTQ Activist Quits Hunger Strike At National Assembly After Two Days [Video] 1

Emmanuel, who is at the forefront of a campaign to repeal the Same-Sex Marriage (Prohibition) Act, said he would hold a one-man protest on an empty stomach at the National Assembly from Saturday till his request is granted.

In the video, Emmanuel said he had come out with the #RepealSSMPA campaign due to the state-supported homophobia and consequent violence on queer people in the country.

The SSMPA law was signed into law in 2014 by President Goodluck Jonathan. It calls for up to 14 years in prison and bans same-sex marriage, same-sex ‘amorous relationships’, and even membership in LGBTQ rights groups or organizations.

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Emmanuel asked people that wish to help to make their message clear to the government – “if you’re queer, an ally, or just a human being who isn’t wicked enough to actually think we deserve 14-years imprisonment for just existing, then I ask you to join me on this journey and send this message to the government: Repeal the SSMPA.”

All through the protests, the activist stood outside the Assembly building holding signs and tweeting in support of repealing the law, using hashtags #RepealSSMPA and #EndHomophobiaInNigeria.

He live-tweeted much of the happenings including a time he feared he would be arrested when he saw police officers approaching.

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Soon after two days, Emmanuel conferred with other LGBTQ activists and decided that it was now best for his campaign to end the hunger strike and stand up for his community in another way.

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“Organisation within the community is important,” Emmanuel said after the decision. “I’ve been able to raise awareness but it’s now time to use other methods maybe legislative or legal.”

According to him, the LGBTQ community feared that the people and the government “don’t care” and that he might have risked his health by continuing on.

“The history of protests in Nigeria has shown that the government don’t really care and may not move into action, hence re-strategising with other members of the community here in Nigeria is important,” he said.

 

KanyiDaily had reported how a 14-year-old boy was tortured and murdered cold bloodedly in the streets of Iraq by homophobes amidst shouts of anti-gay slurs, just because he had a feminine look.

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