Guest article – Christian Professionals denounce the Supreme Court Ruling on LGBTQ NGO registration.

The Kenya Christian Professionals Forum (KCPF) has castigated the Supreme Court of Kenya ruling of February 24, 2023, which allowed for the registration of an NGO for LGBTQ persons, terming the move unconstitutional and one that will have far-reaching implications for the country.

“KCPF is deeply concerned by the recent Supreme Court Judgment. The judgment opens the way to the gradual dismantling of our legal, moral, and cultural prohibitions against homosexual behavior, which is so destructive to the individual, families, communities, and the nation. While the Court did not overturn the anti-sodomy laws in the Penal Code for now, it has signaled that gays and lesbians can now engage untrammeled by legal restrictions to unravel our various guardrails against the promotion of homosexuality,” said the body in a statement dated February 25, 2023, and signed by lawyer Charles Kanjama, the chairperson of KCPF.

On February 24, the Supreme Court of Kenya dismissed an appeal by the NGO coordination board against a High Court order that directed it to register an NGO seeking to advocate for the rights of LGBTQ persons in Kenya. The NGO, the National Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission (NGLHRC) had applied for registration in 2012 but was denied by the board on the grounds that its proposed names were contrary to sections 162, 163, and 165 of the Penal Code, which criminalize gay and lesbian relationships.

According to the ruling, “The Court determined that the use of the word "sex" under Article 27(4) does not connote the act of sex per se but refers to the sexual orientation of any gender, whether heterosexual, lesbian, gay, intersex or otherwise. Further, we find that the word “including” under the same Article is not exhaustive, but only illustrative and would also comprise “freedom from discrimination based on a person’s sexual orientation.”

KCPF, in the statement, says that the Supreme Court ignored the facts and context in which Kenyans enacted the current Constitution in 2010 and failed to deal with the reality that most corporate registration laws worldwide allow prohibition of the use of certain names that harm the public policy of promoting respect for existing laws.

They further criticized the majority opinion of the Supreme Court for reaching “ an unsupported conclusion that sex in the Constitution means sexual orientation rather than binary sexual identity as male and female (as clearly & correctly explained in the dissenting opinion of Justice Ouko),” and “ Applied foreign judgments without discerning their material differences from the Kenyan context, thus disenfranchising the Kenyan people who voted to adopt their Constitution based on their clear understanding that LGBTQ activity was prohibited.”

The Christian Professionals advanced that the ruling is a disregard for the moral and cultural values of Kenyans, which are carefully constructed to protect the natural family through laws that prohibit all aspects of homosexual conduct and its propagation.“Our film and media industry has already been a target. Our education sector and our children and youth are already battling the insidious glamorization and normalization of LGBTQ lifestyles. Our laws are being continuously undermined by targeted disobedience through tactical flaunting of LGBTQ lifestyles. Our churches and religions are under consistent pressure from both within and without to cave into LGBTQ ideology," they stated.

KCPF, the body that brings together Christian Professionals from various denominations sharing common values on Life, Family, Religion, Value-Based Education & Governance, rallied Kenyans to reflect on the “slippery slope we have been thrust upon by the Supreme Court judgment,” and defend their moral values to have laws that align with societal consensus on what is right and wrong.

By Paschal Norbert

(Source- Nairobi, February 28, 2023 (CISA)

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