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AG Justin Muturi responds to Supreme Court ruling on LGBTQ+

The ruling made on February 24, allowed for the registration of LGBTQ+ NGOs

Attorney General Justin Muturi speaking during a church service in Embu County on Sunday February 26, 2023

Attorney General Justin Muturi has said he will challenge the Supreme Court's decision to allow the registration of LGBTQ+ NGOs.

Speaking during a church service in Manyatta, Embu County, Muturi stated that Kenyans should be allowed to voice their opinion on LGBTQ+ people.

Muturi said, "In the interest of the public, I will be seeking the full bench of Supreme Court to address itself over the matter."

On Friday, February 24, the Supreme Court ruled that denying LGBTQ+ members the right to register as an NGO was discriminatory. This followed a 2013 lower court ruling that denied the community in Kenya the ability to register an NGO to advance their rights.

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In its verdict, the judges castigated the NGOs Co-ordination Board for refusing to register four names for an LGBTQ+ organisation on the grounds that same-sex marriage is outlawed in Kenya.

Three judges in the five-judge bench ruled that community members have a right to associate even though the law considers same-sex marriages illegal. Hence, the refusal to register them was discriminatory and against the law.

"It would be unconstitutional to limit the right to associate through denial of registration of an association purely based on the sexual orientation of the applicants," the ruling read in part.

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Supreme Court judges Mohamed Ibrahim and William Ouko however held a firm view that the law was clear on the illegality of gays and lesbians.

The Supreme Court ruling now gives way for LGBTQ+ groups to register for operations in the country.

Members of the clergy have castigated the ruling by the supreme court which they have termed as going against the laws of God.

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CITAM presiding Bishop Calisto Odede in a statement, affirmed that the church will not shy away from condemning such rulings, arguing that encouraging homosexual behaviour wrecks the cultural norms of Africa and stands against Christian doctrines.

"This rather contradictory ruling has left many of us wondering whether other illegal practitioners like paedophiles and those involved in incest also have right of association and if not, how different they are from homosexuals. And perhaps criminal organisations as well," Bishop Odede said in a statement.

Other members of the clergy also termed the move as one aiming to sweep away cultural and religious norms in the country.

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