Wait for the police to investigate — Ekandjo on LGBTQI+ alleged hate murders

Swapo parliamentarian Jerry Ekandjo says police must be allowed to finish their investigations on the recent murders of members of the LGBTQI+ community.

He says he cannot comment on hate speech allegations regarding two anti-gay bills that he mooted, which are now awaiting presidential assent to become law.

“Wait until the police finish their investigations. Those are perceptions and it has nothing to do with hate speech,” Ekandjo says.

He said this after president Nangolo Mbumba said he is still consulting on the way forward regarding the private member’s bills passed by both houses of parliament last year.

In July 2023, the National Assembly swiftly passed the private member’s bills, comprising of the marriage amendment bill and the definition of spouse bill, with minimal amendments, garnering overwhelming support from both sides of the aisle.

“The president has received the bills in question and there is a process of consultation taking place, so that is where it is at this stage,” presidential spokesperson Alfredo Hengari said yesterday.

He said if there are any cases where members of the LGBTQI+ community have been attacked, the law should take its course.

The spouse bill, in particular, progressed through the committee stage without objection.

Ekandjo proposed an additional amendment clarifying the genetic distinction between men and women.

The marriage amendment bill defines marriage as a union between individuals of the opposite sex and prohibits same-sex marriage.

Subsequently, the bills were swiftly approved by the National Council and forwarded to the president for signing a few days later.

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