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Gay couple arrested in Kenya, then released

Neighbors in Kisii County, western Kenya, arranged for a gay couple to be arrested. But that’s as far as it went. Instead of being hauled into court, the couple will go to a Kisii University counselor.

Hivisasa published this photo of the Kisii University security office with its article "Gay couple arrested." There's no indication that the two young men in the photo are the two students who were arrested. (Photo courtesy of Hivisasa.com)
Hivisasa published this photo of the Kisii University security office in connection with its article “Gay couple arrested in Kisii.” There’s no indication that the two young men in the photo are the two students who were arrested. (Photo courtesy of Hivisasa.com)

A university official expressed hope that the counseling would persuade the two Kisii University students to change their “lifestyle.”

“I don’t believe taking them to court will help,” he said.

Same-sex intimacy is illegal in Kenya, but violators are rarely prosecuted.

Kenya’s National Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission, a Nairobi-based LGBTI rights advocacy group, is challenging Kenya’s anti-LGBT laws in court.

Editor’s note: Kenyan activist Denis Nzioka, who initially posted the link to this article, has now labeled it, “Story not confirmed yet.”

Hivisasa.com reported on the Kisii County incident:

Gay couple arrested in Kisii

Location of Kisii in Kenya.
Location of Kisii in Kenya.

Two University gay students were on Monday night [March 12] found in the act by villagers of Nyamage village, Kisii County.

Locals who spoke to Hivisasa said that they have been knowing that the two were gay and they set a trap that night.

“They have been disturbing us here with their noises and every time we question them they become rude. That is how we decided to lay a trap and get hold of them,” said Ms Everlyne Kwamboka, their neighbour.

The angry residents started beating the two up but a good Samaritan who is an official at Kisii University rescued them.

Victor Nyambega a local, said that the two have been in a relationship for two years now.

“We have been seeing them for sometimes now. They behave like women especially the one playing the lady role,” he said.

Mr Hezron Bogonko, a security officer in the university, arrested the two before handing them over to the guidance and counseling department in the school.

An official in the school who requested for anonymity as he is not supposed to speak to the media said that the two will not be arraigned in court.

“The two will undergo proper counseling to help them overcome this kind of lifestyle. I don’t believe taking them to court will help,” he said.

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Written by Colin Stewart

Colin Stewart is a 45-year journalism veteran living in Southern California. After his retirement from paid newspaper work in 2011, he launched Erasing 76 Crimes and helped with the Spirit of 76 campaign that assembled a multi-national team of 26 LGBTI rights activists to advocate for change during the International AIDS Conference in Washington, D.C., in July 2012. He is the president of the St. Paul’s Foundation for International Reconciliation, which supports LGBTQ+ rights advocacy journalism, including the Erasing 76 Crimes news site and the African Human Rights Media Network. Contact him via Twitter @76crimes or by email at info@76crimes.com. Mailing address: 21 Marseille, Laguna Niguel CA 92677 USA.

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