An article published last week in the Standard’s pullout Home And Away, brought up an interesting fact that most people probably don’t know about. The writer, Harold Ayodo, apparently an Advocate of the High Court of Kenya, maintained that same-sex couples can co-own property in Kenya as constitutional right (‘Same sex, too can co-own property’, October 4).
According to article 40(1) of Kenya’s new Constitution:
Every person has the right, either individually or in association with others to acquire and own property-
a) Of any description; and
b) In any part of Kenya.
The same constitution however, maintains that marriage shall only be between a man and woman; hence same-sex marriage is not legal in Kenya at the moment (Article 45 (2)).
This revelation comes after a recent survey showed that the admission of homosexuality is increasing rapidly in Kenya.
KENYA’S GAY ‘REVOLUTION’?
Most homosexuals still operate in secret but a good number of them are coming out openly. Gays and lesbians still face a lot of ridicule, stigma and discrimination but according to Denis Nzioka (www.identitykenya.com), a Kenyan gay rights activist, gays will soon be running the country.
“There is a quiet revolution on gays. We now have close to 50 regional gay, lesbian and transgender groups, all over Kenya.”
In an article entitled The Quiet Revolution, Nzioka highlights activities that show gays are leading a revolution in the country. He mentions that unlike in the recent years, gays are now getting airtime in the country’s media houses, and are confidently marching on the streets demanding their rights. Nzioka notes too that gays will soon be organising their own festival.
FIRST OPENLY GAY MAN TO RUN FOR SENATE
That’s not all. The first openly gay man is set to run for political office in the 2013 general elections.
David Kuria is aiming to capture the Senate seat for Kiambu County. If elected, he will be the first openly gay man to hold a political office, even though it’s alleged that 15 per cent of the current MPs are homosexuals.
So same-sex marriage in Kenya is illegal but same-sex couples can co-own property and co-habit. And the same constitution that bans the former and allows the latter, also states that, ‘Every person has inherent dignity and the right to have that dignity respected and protected’ (Article 28, ‘Human Dignity’).