Gambia’s President Jammeh is a dangerous homophobe
Gambia’s crackpot President Yahya Jammeh is once again engaging in his favourite pastime – bashing gay people.
Gambia Affairs reports that Jammeh told soldiers during a security force march in the capital Banjul that he will defend the country’s “values” by eliminating practices that “would offend the Almighty Allah in the name of freedom.”
“Let me make it very clear, that if they think that they can be homosexuals and want to impose homosexuality on the globe, they are doomed. They say I am intolerant, now they created a new minority… and that homosexuals are a minority that is being oppressed in this country,” said Jammeh.
“All the religious books condemn homosexuality and there is a so-called power of democracy that says that homosexuality is a right. All empires before collapsed not at the time they were weakest, but at the peak of their might and when they equated themselves with the Almighty Allah. So this evil empire of homosexuals will also go down the dirty drain and garbage of hell,” Jammeh ranted.
In the long rambling speech, in which he equated colonialism and racism with the “threat” of homosexuality, Jammeh also claimed that while people could be prosecuted in the West for wearing a veil in public or expressing religious beliefs, “homosexuals can kiss each other in broad daylight and be applauded by the same governments.”
The security force march was a likely show of force following a failed coup attempt last month. Prosecutors in the United States have charged two men for their involvement in the incident.
The president, who has been in power since 1994, has previously likened LGBT people to vermin and malaria-causing mosquitoes, said that homosexuality was amongst the biggest threats facing the world, and even threatened to decapitate gays and lesbians.
He has also claimed to be able to cure HIV and AIDS with natural herbs and has been accused of numerous human rights abuses and of restricting freedom of the press.
In December, Jammeh participated in a mass public rally in support of a new anti-gay law that creates the crime of “aggravated homosexuality” and carries punishment of up to life in prison.
In November, Gambia’s Foreign Minister, Bala Garba Jahumpa, insisted that the country will not negotiate on the issue of LGBT equality with the West, claiming that gay people are un-African and satanic.
That same month, Amnesty International condemned the arrest, detention and torture of eight people as part of a crackdown on “homosexuality” by the Gambian authorities.
Due to the country’s human rights abuses, the US recently dropped the country from an African trade agreement while the EU has withdrawn millions of euros in aid.