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Homosexuality in Cameroon

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image of International Journal on Minority and Group Rights

Should society be protected against homosexuality? To an overwhelming number of Cameroonians, the answer is too obvious for the question of its criminalization, for a little more than four decades, to be revisited. Far beyond questioning the law, it invokes the Spirit of Evil and this is even what creates the abomination. This reasoning would have permitted us to look the other way while the repression of gay people in the country completes its course, if at all the practice could ever be stamped out. But there is a perceptible hardening of resolve within the Cameroonian gay community not to cringe further, the advance of democracy and the heroism of their kind elsewhere in the world being encouraging factors. They boldly demand social rehabilitation and more interestingly are taking their fight into the legal arena where they were thought for decades to be shut out from, even arguing that their non-conforming sexual orientation is a constitutional right. The Cameroonian leadership is exhibiting hints of fatigue as regards a repression that seems to be backfiring. It is apparently weighing its options and biding its time. This article examines the arguments of the forces involved in the stalemate and strives to provide information that may be of help at this defining moment.

Affiliations: 1: Chargé de Cours, Faculty of Law and Political Science, University of Dschang, Dschang, Cameroon


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