Malawian gays have for the first time formed an association to represent gays and lesbians in their country, reports AfricaNews.

The move is seen as a daring one. Homosexuality is illegal and is prosecuted under Section 153 of the Penal Code, which prohibits “unnatural offences”, and Section 156 which protects “public decency.”

The news service quotes interim Chairperson McLeod as saying: “What people must know is that Malawi has always had an active gay population. And these people have been meeting for a long time. Only that now we have decided to come forth because we want our views heard.”

He goes on to add: “we are Malawian citizens who should be protected like anyone else. Doesn’t our Republican constitution say everyone is equal, and that nobody is more equal than others?”

Although the organisation is only set to officially launch in Blantyre on September 13 McLeod claims to already have 3890 members.

The organisation is looking for funding and aims to educate the public about homosexuality through outreach programmes.

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