Press Release: FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday 29 September, 2011
(Lagos, 29/09/11) The Nigerian Senate is proposing a law to prohibit marriage of persons of same sex and solemnization of same sex and other related matters. The sponsored bill, titled ‘A bill for an act to prohibit marriage between persons of same sex, solemnisation of same and for other matters related therewith’, which scaled the crucial second reading in the Senate yesterday, will make it a crime to contract a marriage with another person of the same sex. The bill has now been sent to the Standing Committee on Judiciary, Human Rights and Legal Matters, as well as the Committee on Health and Interior. MPAC lauds this important action by the Senators as an irreplaceable component to fulfilling the responsibility of preventing moral and cultural disasters in our country. Specifically, it is a legitimate state interest to prevent the moral and cultural disasters that the scourge of homosexuality will inevitably unleash on us. We only need to look at societies where public morality and welfare have been eroded in the name of tolerance to see the evidence of this.
The Senators who voted in favour of the bill did us all proud. They described the act as “ungodly, morally and religiously unacceptable”, and in his lead debate, the sponsor of the bill Senator Domingo Obende of Edo North senatorial district observed that same-sex marriage cannot be allowed on both moral and religious grounds. MPAC wholly agrees with this position and also opine that there is no cultural justification for such a sick and shameful practice. When this issue first came to national limelight in 2009, MPAC wrote an article that was published in the newspapers condemning agitation of a section of the society calling for recognition of gay group. Our position is firmer today on the vexed issue.
The Quran forbids any sexual relationship other than in a marriage between a man and a woman. Many homosexual men and women claim that they are born with their sexual perversion and that they have no choice. Although this point is very much in dispute in the medical world, most importantly it has no support in the Quran. Even then, irrespective of the nature of homosexuality, this matter would not affect the laws spelled out clearly in the Quran and in all divine religions. Homosexuality is not only a sin in Islam, it is also a crime.
The Biblical account of the story of Sodom concerning homosexuality is related as follows in the Qur’an:
We also (sent) Lut: he said to his people: “Do ye commit lewdness such as no people in creation (ever) committed before you? “For ye practice your lusts on men in preference to women: ye are indeed a people transgressing beyond bounds.” – Holy Quran 7:80-81
“Of all the creatures in the world will ye approach males”. “And leave those whom Allah has created for you to be your mates? Nay ye are a people transgressing (all limits)!” – Holy Quran 26:165-166
By criminalising the benign lifestyle preference, the Senators will be saving our country a death-sentence as the end result for not giving up homosexuality was the destruction of entire cities:
When our decree issued We turned (the cities) upside down and rained down on them brimstone hard as baked clay spread layer on layer Marked as from thy Lord: nor are they ever far from those who do wrong! – Holy Quran 11:82-83
While MPAC is encouraged by Senator Domingo Obende’s submission and applauds him and his colleagues who co-sponsored and supported the bill for promoting morality within the framework of the Nigerian law-making process, it remains to be seen what actions will be taken by others charged with progressing the bill through the legislative process. In the midst of grave international pressure and an upsurge of unhealthy campaigns by ideology-driven movements and advocacy groups that are calling for the legalisation of the moral perversion called homosexuality, and the institutionalisation of same-sex marriage, those inside and outside government ranks who truly value human beings created and honoured by God should recognize the importance of siding with our lawmakers and lobbying for the quick passage of this bill. This action by our lawmakers would substantially improve Nigeria’s image and will represent the true values upheld by the vast majority of the Nigerian people.
Director of Media and Communications
Muslim Public Affairs Centre, MPAC
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