Tuesday, August 25, 2009

At Risk of being Misunderstood…

NAMIBIA – 18 August 2009: “Do we really need to promote homosexuality in Karas Region?” Karas Regional Councillor Hilma Nikanor asked after a presentation at a Council meeting on Friday.
Nikanor charged it was “immoral to promote homosexuality” after a presentation on gay and lesbian rights by the Czech Republic based NGO People In Need(PIN) Head of Mission, Hanna Urbanova.
Nikanor claimed that foreign NGOs come to Namibia under the guise of assisting in the country’s socio –economic development, but then embark on programmes promoting “immorality.”
“We are facing development challenges, why spend money on homosexuality?”Nikanor asked.
Supporting her, Oranjemund Constituency Councillor Toivo Nambala, said: “They’re brandishing a funny project.”
Karasburg Constituency Councillor Paulus Ephraim echoed these sentiments, saying that the Council could not entertain programmes detested by national leaders.
For his part, Karas Regional Governor Dawid Boois termed the gay and lesbian issue as “sensitive.”
“Yes, we have gays and lesbians .We cannot ignore that they’re human beings too,” Boois said.
The discussion happened after People In Need’s Urbanova had left the Council chamber. Urbanova’s presentation was about a public sensitisation campaign around gay and lesbian rights to be funded by Dutch NGO Hivos.
Urbanova said Regional Councillors had misunderstood her presentation and that the aim of the project was not to promote homosexuality, but about human rights and tolerance towards sexual minorities.
“How can one promote such a thing, either you’re born a homosexual or heterosexual. That’s it, you can’t change it.” said Urbanova.
The Karas Regional Council decided to have another meeting with the NGO to discuss the issue and to include Regional Councillors David Shoombe and Willem Apollus, who were not present at Friday’s meeting.

No comments:

Post a Comment