President Alassane Ouattara

The president of Cote d’Ivoire has dismissed any thoughts of legalising same-sex marriage, saying that the West African country will stick to its culture and laws.

According to the Premium Times, the government quoted President Alassane Ouattara when he briefly addressed the issue during an official visit to the northern part of the country on Monday.

“I do not have much comments to make on this issue; we have laws in Cote d’Ivoire, we have traditions too; we will stick to them,” Ouattara said.

The statement follows a CFA 30 million (around R500 000) grant by the French Embassy to an NGO to support LGBT equality in the country.

The move was seen by some Ivoirians as an attempt to promote same-sex marriage.

The Ivorian Minister of Public Service, Gnamiem Konan, recently expressed his view on the matter.

He described gay marriage as “purely un-African,” adding that it “is an aberration, it is a radical deviation from our moral and cultural values as a people”.

Sex between consenting adults of the same sex is legal in Cote d’Ivoire, which has a population of around 20 million, but LGBTI people have no specific protection from discrimination under the law.

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