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Nigeria Foreign Minister warns the West against ‘imposing’ gay rights

Sunday, July 21, 2013

ABUJA, Nigeria — Nigeria’s Foreign Affairs Minister on Saturday declared that the West is trying to “impose” gay rights on the country.

During a session with representatives of the international community in the Nigerian capital of Abuja, Olugbenga Ashiru said “foreign” diplomats should not try and impose “gay” values that are “not part” of Nigeria’s “culture.”

Olugbenga Ashiru

Ashiru accused the international community of hypocrisy and said Nigeria would not legalize LGBT rights.

“This issue must be understood because we have been under pressure about this issue of gay rights,” he said. “It is not part of our own culture. It needs to evolve. Let us get to that stage of understanding that two men can marry, then we will get to the bridge and cross it.”

Ashiru said that foreign diplomats should educate their various governments that they cannot “impose values that are not part of our culture on us.”

Homosexuality is illegal in the federal system of Nigeria and is punished in different states in varying degrees of severity.

In May, lawmakers in Nigeria passed a bill banning same-sex marriage and outlawing anyone from forming organizations supporting gay rights, setting prison terms of up to 14 years for offenders. Witnesses or anyone who helps couples marry could be sentenced to 10 years behind bars.

The bill is due to be signed into law by President Goodluck Jonathan shortly.

Adebisi Alimi, a Nigerian LGBT rights advocate, told LGBTQ Nation the attack on the West is a “pure double standard.”

“It pure hypocrisy that Nigeria’s government, on the one hand, begs for international aid, and the other, turns around to demonize the West for ‘imposing,’” he said. ““Nigeria has signed up to many international charters to protect human rights, so the international community simply calls the country to adhere and respect the right to freedom of life, association and opinion.”

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73 more reader comments:

  1. We should be giving $$$$ to any country that abuses its own people for any reason….. period

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 3:33pm
  2. the nigerian minister needs to shut his face and deal with his own country he should be more worried about scams being run out of his country thry the net

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 3:35pm
  3. @ JoMarie Smith…. I think you mean to say We should NOT be giving $$$$ to any country that abuses its´ own people. I agree!

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 3:36pm
  4. africa is a lost cause… we should focus on advancing gay rights in areas that has any hope of doing it… like rwanda, south africa, cape verde and the occupied territories of spain, portugal, and france…

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 3:36pm
  5. How about we start imposing a few embargos?

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 3:36pm
  6. As Hilary Clinton said “gay rights are human rights ” and our government needs to uphold them in our dealings with every country.

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 3:37pm
  7. I am SO glad my girl is here and not there…

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 3:38pm
  8. We should start renaming what we call all of these countries: Bigot 1, Bigot 2, Bigot 3. Then, until they treat all people fairly with basic human rights, they will just be known as just a bunch of bigots.

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 3:38pm
  9. What are they gonna do? Not accept the tons of money we send them every year?

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 3:38pm
  10. our own people are getting abused, we should bring ALL our foreign money home along with troups

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 3:38pm
  11. I almost had a heart attack; I misread the title, thinking it said, “imposing ON gay rights.” Whew. How could I be so silly, when CLEARLY, that statement would never happen? Homophobia is alive and well allover the world.

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 3:39pm
  12. If it is not in there culture then it is about time they changed there culture. As Andi suggested, Maybe if we withdrew our aid to these people they would very quickly fall into line. It is the only way.

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 3:47pm
  13. Prayers

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 3:47pm
  14. Both the United States and the United Nations should pull all aid and monies going to any country in Africa that does not accept true civil rights. Of course, then the Continent will just turn to the American Evangelical Christian movement, which started all these antigay bills in Africa in the first place.

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 3:51pm
  15. It´s not “Gay” rights and it´s not also “Straight” rights. It´s HUMAN RIGHTS!!!!

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 3:55pm
  16. We need to immediately start withdrawing all foreign aid from these countries. This has reached a point where it can no longer be ignored.

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 3:58pm
  17. Hold on a second, did people actually read the article? I think there´s a communication error and we´re demonizing a man who actually is willing to accept that these things need to happen but it will take time.

    “This issue must be understood because we have been under pressure about this issue of gay rights,” he said. “It is not part of our own culture. It needs to evolve. Let us get to that stage of understanding that two men can marry, then we will get to the bridge and cross it.”

    Ashiru said that foreign diplomats should educate their various governments that they cannot “impose values that are not part of our culture on us.”

    I think he´s trying to say that we need to be patient, that this is going to happen, it´s just going to have to happen slowly and organically. I might not fully agree, but I think it´s a step in the right direction.

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 4:03pm
  18. He looks constipated.

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 4:03pm
  19. …and jaundiced. Maybe it´s affecting his brain.

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 4:03pm
  20. that is messed if you gay men and women are there. they are part of your culture you just closed minded to see it

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 4:07pm
  21. I do not want my tax dollars supporting this country.

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 4:09pm
  22. True hypocrisy! They want our money, but not out values. Or shall I say basic human rights!

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 4:14pm
  23. When they are going to respect human rights?
    It has long been practiced in their country, ignorance of the human rights.
    I personally think that it´ll take more lives before they could finally recognize simple basic human rights……

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 4:16pm
  24. human rights, asshole.

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 4:17pm
  25. Not imposing, sir. But including them in a just society. When even one is repressed, we are all repressed. And yours is a culture doomed to failure as you repress human nature.

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 4:18pm
  26. Nigeria is a backward nasty country.

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 4:20pm
  27. If this Abuja feels so threatened by gay people, how small must his life and existence be? I agree with Jay Justice! Well said Jay!

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 4:21pm
  28. Fcuk Nigeria

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 4:32pm
  29. All of Africa and the Middle East is like this, it´s not news.

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 4:35pm
  30. Small Minded Idiot.

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 4:39pm
  31. keeps your advice foreign affairs minister, we all know what a wonderful country beloved Nigeria is.

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 4:40pm
  32. Meanwhile NOM and other us Christofascists are imposing gay “wrongs” there.

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 4:42pm
  33. If they don´t want us influencing them then they should cut us off completely. I´d like to see how long their country lasts without us.

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 4:51pm
  34. We´re talking human rights…. enough said!

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 4:55pm
  35. doesn´t the foreign minister realize imposing works both ways? i am sure he uses the money system there and it has two sides to the paper and coin

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 5:08pm
  36. HOMOPHOBE !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Maybe WE should ship ALL the Homophobes to the MOON !!!

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 5:17pm
  37. and then we(USA) need to STOP sending Nigeria any foreign aid !!!!!

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 5:22pm
  38. Has no issue with the West imposing Christianity though! Dumbass! To quote Arch-Bishop Desmond Tutu, “When Europeans came here, we had the land and they had the Bible. They told us to close our eyes and pray and when we opened them, they had the land and we had the Bible.”

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 5:26pm
  39. Get a heart attack.

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 5:28pm
  40. Yeah, how about that!

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 5:33pm
  41. warning? who is he how about we take away our billions of dollars and see what he has to say.

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 5:52pm
  42. I hope we aren´t imposing our aid, funds, cash, food, fuel, medicines, etc.

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 5:53pm
  43. I don´t mean to impose, but could you stop rounding up and killing people who have done nothing to hurt anyone?

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 5:53pm
  44. Shocking. NOT!!!

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 6:00pm
  45. fucking jerk

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 6:01pm
  46. He failed to evolve from
    The apes you can see it by just looking at him

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 6:04pm
  47. They´re called human rights.. IDIOT!

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 6:18pm
  48. Human rights ARE gay rights.

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 6:23pm
  49. Yeah, and we´re all running so scared of Nigeria! They´ll flood us with phony sweepstakes offers if we don´t behave ourselves! ;-) <3

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 6:31pm
  50. RIGHTS ARE NOT SOMETHING YOU RESTRICT..btw how did yo ulike YOUR rights whe nSLAVERY was around ? loved it ?

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 6:32pm
  51. Yeah, we should stop imposing our money on that corrupt hell hole too.

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 6:47pm
  52. Lets restrict the money we send them each year. No lets ban them from getting any money.

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 6:48pm
  53. Come into the 21st Century and be Humane!

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 6:50pm
  54. Just think.. what if the white man´s religion never invaded this beautiful country…. would they be this hateful? Guess we will never know.

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 6:57pm
  55. Another place to boycott. It´s disgraceful.

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 7:39pm
  56. Can´t even feed his people or get them medical care and he worries about stupid shit the missionaries have brainwashed him with.

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 7:52pm
  57. Long ago some white man would have warned against imposing his rights.

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 7:53pm
  58. lol ignorant fool..

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 9:29pm
  59. What a fucking lunatic.

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 9:37pm
  60. how do you ´impose´ gay rights? they should just be

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 9:55pm
  61. How about lets bomb your entire nation off the planet until you comply ya prick!!!!!!!

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 10:47pm
  62. then do not ask for money then!!!!

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 11:16pm
  63. You imbecile its call Human rights. Nigeria is a Sad country i feel sorry for them.

    Posted on Sunday, July 21, 2013 at 11:31pm
  64. I pray for my gay brother and sisters in Africa who are going through this shit because of bigoted leaders like that. #PrayForAfricasGays

    Posted on Monday, July 22, 2013 at 12:00am
  65. Then don´t ask for fucking help…. I f your people are dying WTF is more important.

    Posted on Monday, July 22, 2013 at 12:19am
  66. Fuck

    Posted on Monday, July 22, 2013 at 1:33am
  67. You

    Posted on Monday, July 22, 2013 at 1:33am
  68. the imposition is the lack to acknowledge human rights!!! wake up and be delivered into the Joy of the power of LOVE!

    Posted on Monday, July 22, 2013 at 1:38am
  69. The concept of Equality is not welcome in Nigeria.

    Posted on Monday, July 22, 2013 at 2:43am
  70. You do not want our human rights, do not take our financial aid

    Posted on Monday, July 22, 2013 at 5:08am
  71. >:( Don´t go to Nigeria or buy Nigerian products.

    Posted on Monday, July 22, 2013 at 6:33am
  72. Heaven forbid! Then there would be liberty & justice for all! We can´t let that happen.

    Posted on Monday, July 22, 2013 at 7:07am
  73. Nigeria is one of the most corrupt country in the world. What are we helping them. Do they have oil?

    Posted on Monday, July 22, 2013 at 7:46am