A shocking story of mob violence, which almost culminated in the death of one of the leaders of Changing Attitude Nigeria, a Christian gay group, has emerged.
The violent attack occurred at the funeral ceremony held for the sister of Davis Mac-Iyalla, attended by six members of the Port Harcourt group, on Thursday 20 March 2008.
Attacked was the CAN Port Harcourt leader who is not being named. “I am in total shock and living in fear while feeling the pains,” the victim said.
“I suffered in the hands of a mob group that attacked me at the Service of Songs for Davis’s late sister. While hymn singing was going on a muscular man walked up to me and asked me for a word outside the compound.
“The next thing I saw was a mob group who were there to attack me. They started slapping and punching me, kicked me on the ground and spat on me. I have never known fear like I knew when they were brutalizing me. I thought they were going to kill me there and then.
“While beating me they were shouting: ‘You notorious homosexual, you think can run away from us for your notorious group to cause more abomination in our land?’ Those who attacked me were well informed about us so I suspect an insider or one of the leaders of our Anglican church have hands in this attack,” he added.
Davis Mac-Iyalla, Director of Changing Attitude Nigeria, learning of the attack, said: “Please hold the Port Harcourt group in your prayers as we seek God’s guidance on this ugly and sad period of testing in our life.”
Speaking from Devizes in Wiltshire, England, Colin Coward, the director of Changing Attitude called on the Church of Nigeria to denounce the attack.
“The attack on one of the CAN leaders in Port Harcourt is a terrifying indictment of the attitude of the Church of Nigeria to LGBT people.
“Violence against LGBT people has been encouraged by Archbishop Peter Akinola and the leaders of the Church of Nigeria. They have attacked the presence of LGBT in church and society, and supported a bill which would reinforce prejudice against LGBT people.
“Changing Attitude calls on the Church of Nigeria to denounce violence against LGBT people. We challenge the leaders of the global south coalition to repent of their un-Biblical views which fuel prejudice against LGBT people in our Communion.”
In a statement, Changing Attitude Nigeria said: “The thugs who attacked the Port Harcourt leader told him: ‘We will not rest until we silence you and any who join you to pollute the land with the abominable act of homosexuality. You are perverts who go around corrupting and inducting young people into our evil society. We will kill you and it will be a favour to the country. Nigeria will not contain you or any other person that practises homosexuality.’”