President Bongo’s Allies Unhappy, Want Law Approving Same Sex Marriage Abrogated

The recent law passed by the Gabonese National Assembly authorising marriage between individuals of the same sex, thereby approving homosexuality, has not gladdened a large number of Gabonese who see their government as having bowed to pressure from western interests.

Among individuals and entities expressing their dissatisfaction with the law is one of the parties that have been the main support of Gabonese President Ali Bongo Ondimba, the Democratie Nouvelle (DN)(New Democracy) party.

In an outing in the Gabonese capital, Libreville, on June 26, 2020, the party’s Second Secretary in charge of Programmes, Patrick Eyogo Edzang, threatened to take the matter to the Constitutional Court because the said pro-homosexuality law “is not in conformity with the constitution of the Republic of Gabon”.

According to Edzang, line 5 of Article 402 penalises homosexuality in Gabon.

He said that the country’s constitution defines the family as a cell of the natural basis of society which reposes on marriage between two persons of opposite sex.

The New Democracy party draws attention of the Gabonese people to Paragraph 14 of the country’s constitution which stipulates that “the family is the basic natural cell of society, marriage between persons of different sexes is the pillar. They are placed under the protection of the state.

For the pro-homosexuality law to become effective, the constitution must first be amended to support marriage between individuals of the same sex, he stressed.

“There can thus not be a union between persons of the same sex in Gabon if the constitution is taken into consideration,” declares Edzang.

He said “homosexuality in our country is neither normal nor legal. Consequently, all laws authorising union between homosexuals or which grants them special rights or particular treatment would be against the constitution.”

The ND thus calls on the National Assembly and Senate to “seriously rethink their stand on this problem in the strict respect of our cultural values and thus conform with the dispositions of the fundamental law of our country,” he said.

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Chief Bisong Etahoben

Chief Bisong Etahoben is a Cameroonian investigative journalist and traditional ruler. He writes for international media and has participated in several transnational investigations. Etahoben won the first-ever Cameroon Investigative Journalist Award in 1992. He serves as a member of a number of international investigative journalism professional bodies including the Forum for African Investigative Reporters (FAIR). He is HumAngle's Francophone and Central Africa editor.

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