Kenya archbishop denounces High Court ruling permitting gay rights group to register with the state

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Jackson Ole Sapit.jpg
Jackson Ole Sapit

The Archbishop of Kenya has denounced an appeals court ruling that permitted a gay rights group to register with the state as an NGO (non-governmental organization).

On 22 March 2019 the Court of Appeal overturned an administrative decision that rejected a 2015 application from the National Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission from registering as an NGO. Under Kenyan law NGOs must obtain a license from the state to operate in Kenya. Sodomy is a crime under Kenyan law, and the government had held it could not register an organization that supported criminal acts.

The 3-2 decision by the appeals court upheld a lower court ruling which overturned the administrative ruling. Justice Philip Waki told the court: “The issue of LGBT is rarely discussed in public. But it cannot be doubted that it is an emotive issue, the reality is that this group does exist and we can no longer deny that.”

Speaking to the media on Sunday after preaching at Holy Trinity parish in Kibera, Nairobi, the Most Rev. Jackson Ole Sapit said the Anglican Church of Kenya repudiated the ruling and would not relent in its fight against sin.

“The Church does not support the ruling on LGBT association. This is not only unconstitutional but also against the teachings of God,” the archbishop told Mediamax.

The constitutionality of Kenya’s sodomy laws are under legal challenge, and a decision from the High Court is expected at the end of the current judicial term in May.