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Lobby group celebrate Supreme Court’s ruling on LGBTQ association

The Kenya Human Rights Commission has praised the Supreme Court’s decision to dismiss the petition challenging the registration of same-sex relationship associations in the country.

On September 12, 2023, the apex court in the country confirmed that the National Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission (NGLHRC) has the right to register in Kenya.

According to the lobby group, Kenya’s NGO coordination board refused to register NGLHRC in 2012 by claiming the commission ‘promoted same-sex conduct’.

“Everyone’s rights must be honored no matter who they are or who they love. The NGO board was wrong all those years and will remain so,” the lobby group said in a statement.

In early 2023, the same court ruled the board was wrong to cancel the NGLHRC’s registration and allow it to be formally recognized as an organization, a decision that has provoked mixed reactions from Kenyans and led to a petition asking the court to review its ruling.

“The judges issued their verdict today, reaffirming what we all know: The right to association and freedom from discrimination cannot be restricted.”

The group now says that even as it celebrates victory, the journey towards a truly inclusive society is far from over.

“LGBTQI+ individuals still confront violence and discrimination, serving as a stark reminder that the fight for equality endures.”

The commission has also reiterated that it will not stop defending everyone’s rights, regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity.

“We will keep pushing until LGBTQI+ persons can enjoy all their rights, free from discrimination and violence.”

President William Ruto, his Deputy Rigathi Gachagua, and other leaders had expressed reservations on the issue, saying the country was not ready for the association of the LGBTQ community.

“We respect the Court but I will not allow it in Kenya. We have our culture and traditions, we respect our constitution and all our religions,” Ruto said in his recent reaction to the LGBTQ association in Kenya.

The President claimed that the vice was “satanic beliefs”.

Ruto went ahead to instruct Attorney General Justin Muturi to challenge the ruling, a move that was supported by the Kenyan churches.

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