Kano Hisbah Officer Detained for Criticizing LGBTQ Clampdown

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The Kano State Hisbah Board has arrested and detained one of its officials, Idris Gama, for allegedly faulting the arrest of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer members by the police.

 

A video of Gama went viral on social media on Monday, where he was heard supporting a group suspected of promoting LGBTQ in the state.

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Afam Osigwe

Chukwuemeka Mbamala

Chukwuemeka Mbamala

 

The Commander General of the board, Sheikh Aminu Daurawa, speaking with newsmen in Kano, reiterated that the state government had banned any group or association promoting LGBTQ in the state.

 

He also announced that Gama had been apprehended and placed in custody by the board.

 

But the detained Gama pleaded for leniency, saying he mentioned the LGBTQ acronym without knowing its full meaning.

 

Speaking with newsmen, he said he was invited via WhatsApp to a workshop on women’s empowerment, where a paper was presented on human rights.

 

He said, “I was personally invited, and after the programme, I was interviewed on how the police arrested LGBTQ members, and I said it was a violation of human rights. I didn’t know the full meaning of the LGBTQ.”

 

He denied being a member of any group or association advocating LGBTQ rights, adding that he was only invited to a workshop by a group named Women Initiative for Sustainable Empowerment and Equality.

 

Gama, therefore, appealed for leniency and promised not to associate with WISE in the future

 

The Kano State Government, through the Commissioner for Information, Baba Dantiye, on Monday, ordered a crackdown on all groups promoting LGBTQ in the state

 

According to the commissioner, the activities of WISE were a complete breach of the state’s moral standards and a violation of the Shari’ah.

 

Formerly known as Women Action for Gender Equality, the name changed to WISE, and, according to the commissioner, the state would not condone any act of such groups in any area.

 

A reliable source told The PUNCH on Tuesday that the WISE head office in Kano had already been closed, while officials were nowhere to be found.

 

The Same-Sex Marriage (Prohibition) Act 2013 makes it illegal for same-sex individuals to marry, enter into a civil union, or gain entitlement to any benefits of a valid marriage in Nigeria.

 

Speaking with newsmen on Tuesday, the Commander General of Hisbah said the agency had clamped down on many groups promoting LGBTQ in the state, under the guise of empowerment.

 

He stressed that Kano distanced itself from any agreement or association that contravened the Sharia and Nigerian laws which prohibited same-sex marriage.

 

He urged the public, religious and traditional leaders, media and all relevant stakeholders to join the fight against immorality in the state.

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