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The story about irate youth exacting corporal punishment on a suspected gay in Nima as carried in yesterday’s edition of this paper left all those who read it panting for breath.
For those who chanced upon it on social media some of them could not watch the whole clip, having had to abort the viewing midway or so, the irritating spectacle too overwhelming.
Why would the young men and a few girls take the law into their hands and subject the young man to humiliating punishment because he is gay? It is instructive that not even the law enforcement agents have the authority to do what the young men did to the young man, his offence notwithstanding.
It can only be imagined the psychological impact of the punishment he received at the hands of his aggressors in a country where such conduct is illegal.
Unusual carnal knowledge, which is a decent reference to homosexual activities, is a chargeable offence in our statute books but not the assault of suspects engaged in the act by area boys.
We have learnt regrettably that the bizarre sexual appetite is gaining currency in Nima and other parts of the nation’s capital, at places where suspects could in extreme cases be killed in future. This is what we should guard against.
It is likely that in some of the cases mere suspicion could cause innocent persons to suffer untold punishment at the hands of persons who themselves are not clean.
It is ironic why some of these youth would seek to inject religious ‘decency’ in their abodes through such crude means. In a portion of the clip for instance, the principal interrogator who appeared to be calling the shots, told the suspected gay that they were going to give him a girlfriend after which he would be reporting back to them periodically for them to as it were, examine his progress.
If their action was a response to his unIslamic conduct, contracting a girlfriend so he can engage in non-marital sex still breaches the norms of the faith.
We call on opinion leaders in such areas to impress upon the youth to avoid taking the law into their own hands when suspected gay persons are found in the neighbourhoods.
Matters which are breaches of the law are best handled by law enforcement agents whose task it is to investigate these and prepare adequately for the appropriate charges and arraignment.
Nobody, not even the Police, have the right to strip suspects naked and subsequently administer corporal punishment on them.
What happened in Nima is crude, uncivilized and unacceptable: we are therefore calling on the police to wade into the matter so that those responsible for what the suspect suffered are brought to book.
Not doing anything about the anomaly would not provide the necessary deterrent required under such circumstances.
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