On Saturday, Tanzania government issued a threat to country’s LGBT community saying it’s planning to publish a list of gay people allegedly selling sex online. This came after the government shutdown dozens of HIV/AIDS clinics accused of promoting homosexuality.
Deputy health minister, Hamisi Kigwangalla, wrote on Twitter that his government was investigating the homosexuality syndicate and would arrest and prosecute those involved in the gay sex business.
“I will publish a list of gay people selling their bodies online,” Kigwangalla wrote. “Those who think this campaign is a joke, are wrong. The government has long arms and it will quietly arrest all those involved. Once arrested, they will help us find others.”
In a statement, the US embassy in Dar es Salaam condemned the war on LGBT community sayng it could impact HIV/Aids programmes funded by the American government, and impede progress made over the years in addressing the epidemic in Tanzania.
Under the Tanzanian penal code, sex between two males is highly punishable, ranging from 30 years to life imprisonment. There is, however, no such ban on lesbian relations.
We have suspended the provision of HIV and AIDS services at at least 40 drop-in centers operated by NGOs countrywide, after it was established that the centers were promoting homosexuality, which is against Tanzania’s laws,” Health Minister Ummy Ally Mwalimu said in a press conference.
Last year, Mwalimu said it was estimated that 23 percent of men who have sex with men in Tanzania were living with HIV/AIDS. Mwalimu, 43, is a Muslim MP from Dar es Salaam.
Tanzania president John Pombe Joseph Magufuli, 57, is Christian. Last year he told Benjamin Netanyahu that his government plans to open country’s first embassy in Tel Aviv since Tanganyika-Zanzibar federated union in 1964.
On January 1, 2014, Irene Shaland at the Global Travel Authors reported that there were 40,000 people of Lost Tribe of Israel living in Tanzania. No wonder, LGBT community is flourishing in the country.