Don’t force gay agenda on us, Barack Obama told


US President Barrack Obama has been told to avoid the homosexuality debate or lobbying for the rights of gays when he visits the country in July.

A meeting between the Inter-Religious Council of Kenya, religious scholars and some Members of Parliament on Saturday in Nairobi resolved to hold nationwide protests ahead of his visit in July.

The protest, they say, will express Kenyans’ discontent at the way the American government has been pushing gay rights down the throats of African countries.

The leaders anticipate that with the recent decision of the High Court to allow registration of gay organisations, President Obama will be motivated to address the issue.

The US leader openly clashed with Senegal President Macky Sall on his first presidential visit to the continent.

“We would like to send a strong message to the US president that the homosexuality debate should not become part of his agenda as it has been his tendency whenever he comes to Africa,” said Bishop Mark Kariuki of the Evangelical Alliance of Kenya.

The leaders, who held a closed-door meeting at Ufungamano House, said they will be organising protests ahead of the main anti-gay demo in June to express their dissatisfaction with the recent court ruling.

They vowed to pursue the case through the umbrella “Pro Family” movement that they formed on Saturday.

“We don’t want outside influence concerning our culture,” said Adan Wachu, the Secretary-General of the Supreme Council of Kenya Muslims.

Kiharu MP Irungu Kang’ata asked the US government to agree that Kenyans are not ready to accept homosexuality and that a push in that direction would strain ties between the two countries.

“We are not prepared to accept, hear or listen to anyone lecturing us on how our culture is good or bad,” he said.


In 2013, President Obama caused a stir during his visit to Senegal by advocating the end of discrimination against gays in Africa.

Meanwhile, a movie banned in Kenya for promoting homosexuality is winning kudos in the US where reviewers are praising the Kenyan-made film.

Stories of Our Lives, a set of five semi-fictional vignettes focused on gay and lesbian Kenyans, was warmly received at a screening in New York on Thursday. It was shown as part of an annual African film festival.

Director Jim Chuchu spoke via Skype from Nairobi with audience members in New York following the hour-long film, which was completed last year.

Stories of Our Lives has never been shown in Kenya, Mr Chuchu said. Its distribution was blocked by the Kenya Film Classification Board on the grounds that it “promotes homosexuality, which is contrary to national norms and values”.

The Nest Collective, the name of the group of Nairobi-based artists who made the film, has been “very careful about sticking to the restriction,” Mr Chuchu said. Not even his own family has seen Stories of Our Lives, Mr Chuchu told the New York audience, noting that his mother refers to it as “that bad film”.

The Hollywood Reporter offered a different assessment last month. “Chuchu and his team have made a brave, beautiful, timely film,” reviewer Stephen Dalton wrote.

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