James Mwape and Philip Mubiana, both 22 years old, will appear in court on 12 September in the Zambian town of Kapiri Mposhi for a remand hearing. They are facing two counts each of committing offences “against the order of nature”.
Those offences are to have consensual and private gay sex, because homosexuality is a very serious offence in Zambia in any case. Under Zambian law, sexual relations between men are punishable by up to 14 years in prison.
The arrest of two men, last April, resulted from an anti-gay campaign, when Justice Minister Wynter Kabimba urged the Zambian public to report homosexuals. In response to that appeal, Mubiana’s sister Sharon reported her brother to police. Both men are in police custody since their arrest, and have been denounced police abuses and tortures.
Last June, Amnesty International warned on rising levels of homophobia and prosecution against LGBT people in Africa. In the last decade, homophobic attacks and harassment are becoming more visible specially in sub-Saharan Africa. Currently, homosexuality is punished in 36 African countries.
You can check the status of LGBT rights in each African country on Ilga.org website.
This is not a crime!