Senegal men jailed for gay sex

Jupiter Tamsir Ndiaye and with Matar Diop Diagne have received severe sentences for having gay sex, four year and three year imprisonment without parole respectively

Senegal men jailed for gay sex
24 October 2012

Ndiaye, a famous journalist and employee of UNESCO has been sentenced to a four year prison sentence without parole, for having gay sex and causing grievous bodily harm to Diagne.

Diagne, a 27 year-old male merchant, who was also convicted of committing ‘acts against nature’ (ie gay sex) has been sentenced for a three year prison sentence without parole.

Speaking on Senegalese Radio Ndiaye’s lawyer, Khassimou Touré, criticized the judgement: ‘I am surprised, disgusted, and utterly dismayed by this dramatic decision.

‘Today the court passed a moral judgement not a legal one.

‘This decision has no place in our judicial system. It follows and is based on public outrage, and the media which inflamed public opinion and played judge and jury.

‘This is an unjust decision and we will appeal against it.

‘This decision is unfair and unjust, it has no legal justification and it will be totally overruled.

‘The floor and the public prosecutor demanded two years without parole. The court, however, took into consideration the public outcry, instead of the rule of law and effective enforcement.

‘I think there is now some urgency to rethink the social issues occurring within our society’.

‘We should not lead anyone to the gallows on the basis of a simple public outcry, or as some would say, or pressures on our judges.

‘Our judges must take responsibility to uphold the right and do justice in the name of the Republic of Senegal.’

Last week (17 October), in a case revealed by GSN, a packed court room heard how Ndiaye, who is also a former esteemed professor of humanities, had gay sex with a Diagne in his office in UNESCO’s headquarters in Dakar.

The two men were caught by the police after a fight broke out when Diagne demanded payment for sex and was then stabbed by Ndiaye.

The media in Senegal has been hyping up the incident, causing a widespread moral panic and anti-gay sentiments.

Both men have become social outcasts and labelled by the press as ‘socially dead’.

Senegal, a conservative mainly Muslim country in the north west of Africa, specifically outlaws same-sex sexual acts; article 319 prohibits ‘unnatural sexual acts’ and punishes homosexuality with one to five years imprisonment and a fine of 100,000 ($200 €152) to 1,500,000 Senegal Francs ($2,000 €1,524).

Speaking with Gay Star News, Omar Kuddus, and LGBT rights advocate and chair of GayAsylumUK said: ‘I concerned that in fact, according to Ndiaye’s statement that he was effectively “entrapped”.

‘Such practises unfortunately are not uncommon in Islamic states that prohibit and punish homosexuality.

‘Ndiaye’s position as a journalist and his work at UNESCO was being used against him and he has been effectively been judged guilty by the media and public even before his case reached court.

‘Now the court made an example of him, rather than applying justice.’  

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