News / Africa

Gay Marriage Could End Humanity, Nigerian Pastor Says

Pastor Enoch Adejare Adeboye, leader of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, preaches to the congregation at the redeemed camp during the Holy Ghost all-night revival in Lagos, Nigeria. (file photo)Pastor Enoch Adejare Adeboye, leader of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, preaches to the congregation at the redeemed camp during the Holy Ghost all-night revival in Lagos, Nigeria. (file photo)
x
Pastor Enoch Adejare Adeboye, leader of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, preaches to the congregation at the redeemed camp during the Holy Ghost all-night revival in Lagos, Nigeria. (file photo)
Pastor Enoch Adejare Adeboye, leader of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, preaches to the congregation at the redeemed camp during the Holy Ghost all-night revival in Lagos, Nigeria. (file photo)
Heather Murdock
A prominent Nigerian pastor this week said gay marriage could wipe out the human race within 20 years.  This comes as the Nigerian parliament sends a bill to President Goodluck Jonathan that would make gay marriage an offense punishable by up to 14 years in prison. 

Pastor Enoch Adeboye heads the Redeemed Christian Church of God, a mega-church in Lagos, Nigeria's largest city.  The church has 6,000 parishes around the world and the president of Nigeria attends his sermons. 

Last weekend, the pastor weighed in on an issue that is barely controversial in Nigeria - gay marriage.  He called gay marriage an “evil” and that, if it is allowed, no one will have babies and the human race will die out.

Right now, gay marriage is not recognized anywhere in Nigeria but it’s not a crime either-not yet anyway. 

Late last year, the Nigerian parliament passed a bill that will make gay marriage, or ‘abetting or aiding’ gay marriage punishable by up to 14 years in prison.  The lone voice of dissent among lawmakers said homosexuality is already a crime in Nigeria, so the bill is redundant.

“Same sex marriage cannot be allowed on moral and religious grounds.  The Muslim religion forbids it.  Christianity forbids it and the African traditional religion forbids it," said the bill's sponsor, Senator Domingo Obende.

The next stop for the bill is the president's office, where if signed, it becomes law.  In the Nigerian media these days, politicians and preachers are clamoring for the bill.  Off the record, local reporters say they dare not include gay-rights activists in the stories lest they be seen as ‘pro-gay,’ which can be dangerous in Nigeria.

Gay rights activists say the law will not just criminalize gay marriage, it will essentially outlaw organizations that provide services for gay people, including HIV/AIDS clinics.

At a conference honoring Martin Luther King Jr. in the northern city of Kaduna, U.S. ambassador to Nigeria Terence P. McCulley says the bill may not be in line with international human rights laws.

“We’re looking at it as a question of human rights," he said. "As a question of freedom of expression, freedom of association and questioning if all parts of the bill subscribe to international human rights conventions to which Nigeria is a party.  And we’re worried about some elements, frankly, of the bill which could criminalize people who come together in associations to help people who have HIV and AIDS.” 

At least twice, McCulley said U.S. policy towards Nigeria, or any country, is not conditioned on gay rights issues.  But, he said, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has “made if very clear” that supporting gay rights is an important part of American foreign policy.

Early this month, Nigerian Senate President David Mark said the law is “irrevocable.” 

“There are many good values we can copy from other societies,” he said.  “But certainly not this one.”

Ibrahima Yakubu contributed to this report from Kaduna

You May Like

Video VOA Reporter Tours Devastated Peshawar School

Islamist militants wearing military uniforms and strapped with explosives attacked a military run school Tuesday in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar. At least 141 people were killed in the horrific attack, most of them young students. More

Video Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacks

Dropout rate at an all-time high in South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during 3-year civil war More

Tennessee Songbirds Fly Coop Long Before Tornadoes Arrive

Researchers say birds apparently alerted to danger by sounds at frequencies below range of human hearing More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
US: Response to Sony Hack Will Be Proportionali
X
Aru Pande
December 19, 2014 1:45 AM
The White House says President Barack Obama considers the cyberattack on Sony Corp. a serious national security matter and that the U.S. will counter with an "appropriate response." VOA correspondent Aru Pande reports.
Video

Video US: Response to Sony Hack Will Be Proportional

The White House says President Barack Obama considers the cyberattack on Sony Corp. a serious national security matter and that the U.S. will counter with an "appropriate response." VOA correspondent Aru Pande reports.
Video

Video Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacks

The school dropout rate is at an all-time high in Sudan's South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during the three-year civil war between the government and SPLA-N rebel forces. Adam Bailes visited Sudan's Nuba Mountains' region and reports many children are simply too scared to go to school
Video

Video Nigerians Fleeing Boko Haram Languish in Camp Near Capital

In its five-year effort to impose Islamic law in northeastern Nigeria, the Boko Haram extremist group has killed thousands of people and forced hundreds of thousands to flee. Some of those who ran for their lives now live in squalor on the edges of the capital, Abuja. Chris Stein reports for VOA.
Video

Video Putin Says Russian Economy Will Emerge Stronger

Russian President Vladimir Putin has said his country's sinking economy will not only recover but also become stronger, despite falling oil prices and Western sanctions over Ukraine. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports.
Video

Video Detained Turkish Journalists Follow Teachings of US-Based Preacher

The Turkish government’s jailing of critical journalists has sparked international condemnation and is being seen as an effort to undermine the followers of an ailing Turkish preacher based in the United States. VOA religion reporter Jerome Socolovsky has more.
Video

Video ‘Anti-Islamization’ Marches Increase Tensions In Germany

Anti-immigrant rallies in Germany have been building in recent weeks, peaking Monday night in the city of Dresden where tens of thousands of people turned out to demonstrate against what they call the ‘Islamization’ of the West. Germany has offered asylum to more Syrian refugees than any other country, and this appears to have set off the protests. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Aceh Rebuilt Decade After Tsunami, But Scars Remain

On December 26, 2004 there was an earthquake in the Indian Ocean so powerful it caused the Earth’s axis to wobble a few centimeters. Onshore on the island of Sumatra, the resulting tsunami was devastating. A decade later, VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Banda Aceh, Indonesia, where although there is little remaining evidence of the physical devastation, the psychological scars among survivors remain.
Video

Video Refugees Living in Kenya Long for Peace in the Home Countries

Kenya is host to numerous refugees seeking safe haven from conflict. Immigrants from Somalia face challenges in their new lives in Kenya. Ahead of International Migrants Day (December 18) Lenny Ruvaga has more for VOA News from the Kenyan capital.

All About America

AppleAndroid