Bachelet welcomes Botswana High Court decision decriminalizing same-sex relations

Content provided by APO Group. CNBC Africa provides content from APO Group as a service to its readers, but does not edit the articles it publishes. CNBC Africa is not responsible for the content provided by APO Group.
Download logo

The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet on Tuesday warmly welcomed the decision by the High Court of Botswana to decriminalize consensual same-sex relations between adults by striking down relevant provisions of the country’s Penal Code.

The High Court unanimously found sections of the Penal Code that criminalize same-sex relations to be unconstitutional and a violation of human rights including privacy, equality, liberty and dignity.

“This is a landmark decision that should free lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people in Botswana from the range of discriminatory sanctions and practices arising from these highly problematic provisions in the Penal Code,” the High Commissioner said.

“Punishing people based on their sexual orientation has a deeply negative impact that goes far beyond the risk of arrest and imprisonment. Criminalization contributes to stigma and gives free rein to discrimination more generally, leading to lesbian, gay, bisexual and, in some cases, transgender people being denied health care, education, employment and housing,” she said.

Bachelet paid tribute to the important role of an independent and impartial judiciary in addressing injustice. “I congratulate Botswana on this landmark decision and applaud LGBT organisations in Botswana and their allies for their courage and vision. I encourage them to continue their work to ensure full social and legal equality for all people in Botswana,” she said.

This decision builds on previous positive judgments by the High Court and Court of Appeal in Botswana, which have affirmed that LGBT people form part of the rich diversity of any nation and are fully entitled to constitutional protection of their dignity, privacy and equal protection before the law.

Botswana is the ninth country over the past five years to have decriminalized consensual, same sex relationships. Similar decisions have been made by courts and/or lawmakers in Angola, Belize, India, Mozambique, Nauru, Palau, the Seychelles, and Trinidad and Tobago.

Distributed by APO Group on behalf of Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR).

Related Content

AfCFTA: Wamkele Mene on why the free trade deal is Africa’s COVID-19 stimulus plan

The African Continental Free Trade Area promises to be of the biggest economic stimuli for trade on the African continent. But like many projects, it has been hampered by the Covid-19 pandemic. The deal, which aims to boost intra-Africa trade, was launched over a year ago. Commerce was due to start this month; however, it will be implemented in January due to delays. Wamkele Mene, Secretary-General of the African Continental Free Trade Area spoke to CNBC Africa for more....

How will COVID-19 impact Nigerian banks’ half-year earnings?

This month marks a year since the Central Bank of Nigeria introduced the Loan-To-Deposit-Ratio policy. Nigeria's apex bank says banks total credit rose to 3.1 trillion naira on the performance of the LDR policy. Muyiwa Oni, Regional Head, Equity Research at Standard Bank Group joins CNBC Africa for more.

CSCS CEO on how the company is responding to the COVID-19 crisis

Shareholders of the Central Securities Clearing System approved dividend payments which translate to a 22.8 per cent year-on-year growth in returns to shareholders.

How will SA finmin Mboweni cut expenditure?

As the dust settles from South Africa’s emergency budget announcement, economist and ratings agencies have expressed their pessimism towards the finance minister Tito Mboweni’s ability to cut expenditure and deliver on his debt stabilisation plan. Joining CNBC Africa for this discussion are Mamello Matikinca-Ngwenya, Chief economist at FNB, Nicky Weimar, Chief Economist at Nedbank and Murtaza Moulvi, Head of Financial Markets at Standard Chartered Bank....

Subscribe to our newsletter

Sign up for free newsletters and get more CNBC AFRICA delivered to your inbox

More from CNBC Africa

Chinese factories to face headwinds in next phase of post-lockdown recovery

The rosy outlook stands in stark contrast to the dismal industrial landscapes of other economies still fighting COVID-19. Factory output plunged further in May from a year earlier in Japan, South Korea and the United States. Euro zone manufacturing output fell by a record 28% in April.

WHO acknowledges ‘evidence emerging’ of airborne spread of COVID-19

But in an open letter to the Geneva-based agency, published on Monday in the Clinical Infectious Diseases journal, 239 scientists in 32 countries outlined evidence that they say shows floating virus particles can infect people who breathe them in.

Zimbabwe’s health minister, accused of corruption, sacked: statement

HARARE (Reuters) - Zimbabwe’s President Emmerson Mnangagwa has sacked health minister Obadiah Moyo with immediate effect for inappropriate conduct, a statement from...

Senegal slave island, moved by George Floyd’s death, renames Europe Square

“But we also said to ourselves...that in another sense it is celebrating the persecutor,” he said. “What happened to George Floyd was the final straw.”

Partner Content

Maktech’s Godwin Makyao: Now Is A Time of Entrepreneurial Opportunity in East Africa

As an executive decision-maker in both the telecommunications and tourism industries, Godwin Makyao could not have experienced a more diverse set of...

Sanlam launches urgent job-preservation initiative in response to COVID-19

Sanlam Investments is responding to the COVID-19 pandemic through large-scale support of the recovery of South African companies, from small enterprises to...

Trending Now

Implement substantive reforms, Paris Club creditors tell Zimbabwe

HARARE (Reuters) - Zimbabwe should implement sustainable political and economic reforms and successfully complete an IMF monitoring programme in order to normalise...

COVID-19 lock-down: How the Gauteng government plans to safely reopen schools

Since the gradual opening of the economy after lock-down there has been a sharp incline of COVID-19 cases. The government has the task of balancing the health of the people with keeping the economy going and opening the schools. How is the Gauteng provincial government helping? The Gauteng MEC for education is laying out the plans to welcome back school goers....

Parts of South Africa’s Edcon set for sale to Durban-based retailer

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - Parts of South African retail chain Edcon are likely to be sold to private equity-backed Retailability Ltd, administrators in...

Africa to rebound from pandemic slump in 2021 but damage done: AfDB

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - Africa is expected to partially rebound next year from a pandemic-induced economic slump, but it could still lose nearly...
- Advertisement -