Malawi Gay Couple Denied Bail a Second Time

Steven Monjeza and Tiwonge Chimbalanga, the gay couple being held in a Malawi jail after being arrested following an engagement ceremony, have been denied bail a second time, because the judge fears for their safety:

Malawicouple "'The State fears for applicants' safety based on the kind of reaction
members of the public have demonstrated each time they are brought to
court,' Justice Rowland Mbvundula said in the ruling. The judge observed that the public has been hostile and negative towards
the couple since the trial started. This is the second time the courts
have denied them bail."

Box Turtle Bulletin reports that Malawi gay rights group Magrim is planning a demonstration this Sunday in Blantyre, Malawi's largest city. Efforts are also currently underway in parliament to make the country's anti-homosexuality law, which currently imposes a prison sentence of 14 years for homosexual acts, harsher.

Monjeza and Chimbalanga have been jailed for more than a month.

Posted January 29, 2010 at 12:36pm ETC by Andy Towle
in Malawi, News