Same-Sex Relationships No Longer a Crime in Botswana

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11/10/2019

Botswana becomes yet another African country to repeal its colonial laws against homosexuality, and recognise gay people as humans deserving of love and respect. Several decades ago, same sex relations were taken as a serious offence by the colonial-era section 164 of Botswana’s penal code. According to the code, same-sex relationships were “against the order of nature.” The code stated that homosexuality should be punishable by between two and seven years in prison. In a new development, Botswana has now joined South Africa, Angola, Mozambique, Cape Verde, and São Tomé in decriminalizing same-sex relationship. According to Global Citizen, Botswana’s High Court decriminalised same-sex relationships in an unanimous ruling welcomed by the LGBTQ+ community in the southern African country and beyond. Justice Michael Lebutu announced the ruling on Tuesday, said discrimination has no place in Botswana. “A democratic society is one that embraces tolerance, diversity, and open-mindedness,” he said.

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