UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon Expresses ‘Deep Concern’ Over Arrests, Torture of Gays in Nigeria

UN Secretary Ban Ki-Moon has released a statement through his spokesperson on the situation in Nigeria, where the arrests and torture of gay people have been reported following the signing of an anti-gay law by President Goodluck Jonathan.

The statement: Bankimoon

The Secretary-General shares the deep concern expressed yesterday by the High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navi Pillay, following the recent signing into law of the Same-Sex Marriage (Prohibition) Act in Nigeria. The law introduces a wide range of offences, in breach of fundamental human rights, including 14-year jail terms for same-sex couples who live together or attempt to solemnize their union with a ceremony. The Secretary-General fears that the law may fuel prejudice and violence, and notes with alarm reports that police in northern Nigeria have arrested individuals believed by the authorities to be homosexuals, and may even have tortured them.  As UNAIDS and the Global Fund noted in a statement yesterday, the law also risks obstructing effective responses to HIV/AIDS.

The Secretary-General reiterates that everyone is entitled to enjoy the same basic rights and live a life of worth and dignity without discrimination. This fundamental principle is embedded in the UN Charter and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

The Secretary-General strongly hopes that the constitutionality of the law can be reviewed. The United Nations stands ready to assist Nigeria in any way to bring about constructive dialogue and change on this matter.


  1. Lee says

    If this fool really cares he would actually force Nigeria to accept gays but just like everything to do with the UN he is worthless and does nothing of anyone accept the savages who lead these thrid world crap holes

  2. Cd in DC says

    i don’t think they have a word for “gay” in Nigerian so if you can’t say, i guess you can’t be it. Sad to see officials of Western governments in the audience as the Nigerian parliament considered the measure some years ago. Goodluck Jonathan, yeah right.

  3. Paul R says

    Actually for UN speak, this is pretty tough. The diplomatic ramifications are going to be too much for Goodluck to ignore, they’ll likely claw back the law, and horrible abuses will continue without official condemnation.

    That’s diplomacy. Not to mention, Ki-Moon has been far more out about LGBT rights than any other UN executive—even the UNAIDS ones.

  4. says

    “Rarely have I seen a piece of legislation that in so few paragraphs directly violates so many basic, universal human rights,” said High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay. “Rights to privacy and non-discrimination, rights to freedom of expression, association and assembly, rights to freedom from arbitrary arrest and detention: this law undermines all of them.”

    What actions are being taken to address these human rights violations? They obviously violate the UN Charter. They violate Nigeria’s own Constitution. Citizens have been arrested. Lives are at stake. Time to stop the grandstanding and take action.

  5. andrew says

    @LEE: “If this fool really cares he would actually force Nigeria to accept gays” Does it may make you feel good to hurl insults at those speaking out and condemning Nigerian injustice? What do you suggest he do to “force” this nation of over 170,000,000 people to accept gays?

  6. andrew says

    @Marcus Bachmann: If you actually think that the Secretary General of the UN has the authority to imprison people in member nations, you are even dumber than your wife Michele.

  7. Randy says

    “everyone is entitled to enjoy the same basic rights”

    What good are rights when all they get you is “deep concern”? A lot of good that is when you’re dead or imprisoned.

  8. Lee says

    Andrew nothing says do as I say like a few bloody heads on a pike diplomacy is a weakness forced on the strong by the evolution numbing UN things were much better with large empires in charge since then they could force the unenlightened parts of the globe to join the civilized world.

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