US ambassador shocked by 15-year jail sentence for a gay couple in Zambia. Ambassador Daniel Foote told reporters Monday he would not be intimidated by officials in the southern African nation, where same-s.e.x relationships are criminalized. It is a legacy of British colonial-era laws, as with several countries in sub-Saharan Africa.
The United States ambassador to Zambia says local government officials have condemned him for saying he was “horrified” by the sentencing of a local gay couple to 15 years in prison. Joseph Malanji were sentenced to 15 years in prison by the High Court in the capital, Lusaka, after they sought a review of their conviction handed last year by a magistrate’s court.
The ambassador’s statement last week said the men’s consensual relationship hurt no one while “meanwhile, government officials can steal millions of public dollars without prosecution.”
Zambia’s foreign affairs minister, Joseph Malanji, says the government is sending a protest letter to Washington over the remarks and accuses the ambassador of meddling in Zambia’s internal affairs.
“To question (the judiciary’s) decision by a representative of a foreign government is tantamount to questioning the Zambian constitution,” Mr Malanji said. “Until the Zambian constitution is changed to accommodate that, the courts will always rule according to the Zambian constitution,” he said.
Source – Nehanda Radio
In other news – Defence Minister Oppah Muchinguri fingered in Namibia election rigging storm
Defence Minister Oppah Muchinguri fingered in Namibia election rigging storm. This comes after incumbent president Hage Geingob won a second term in office with 56.3% of the vote in Wednesday’s election. While Geingob comfortably saw off his challengers, his figures were significantly down from the 87% with which he won his first term in 2014.
Minister of Defence Oppah Muchinghuri-Kashiri has been accused of aiding in election rigging in Namibia by the country’s opposition. However, the Namibian opposition has cried foul and accused the SADC election observer mission (SEOM) which is headed by Muchinguri-Kashiri of aiding Geingob in rigging the elections. The opposition alleges that SADC was complicit in the rigging by turning a blind eye to…continue reading.