The parliamentarians Angola had voted out the “vice against nature” provision from their penal code, which has its roots when the country was a Portuguese colony.
The South African nation has decriminalized homosexuality and same-sex marriages and “banned” any discrimination based on any sexual orientation.
Angola has taken a revolutionary step to eradicate discrimination and the provision of equal rights when other African nations still criminalize homosexuality with imprisonment.
The United Nations has also hailed this step and has encouraged other nations to follow through.
Victor Madrigal-Borloz, United Nation’s Independent Expert on protection against violence and discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity, highlighted that “The LGBTQ have denounced significant barriers in Angola, in access to health, employment, education and other essential processes, all due to the perception that their very identities are criminal in nature.”
He also urged other states to follow Angola’s move “all other countries that still criminalize homosexuality, must observe these processes of decriminalization as motivation to examine their own legal frameworks, and to bring themselves to full compliance with this human rights imperative”, reported news.un.org.
68 out of the 193 countries recognized by the United Nations, 68 still criminalize same-sex conduct.
South Africa, the first country in the world to decriminalize homosexuality and fifth in the world to legalize same-sex marriage, has a liberal stance towards the provision of rights to the LGBTQ community.
Whereas, homosexuality is still a punishable crime in its neighbour country, Namibia. Despite the discrimination, Namibia hosted its first pride parade three years back, held by the ever-growing LGBTQ community.
Friedel Dausab said, “We are really at a point where even the police chief inspector wants to do diversity training within the police force to make clear they are there for all Namibians, no matter the sexual orientation”.
Duausab heads the human rights organization Out Right Namibia.
“I believe that marriage for all will still come in my lifetime,” he added.
Mozambique, another former Portuguese colony with “vice against nature” provision, discarded it in 2015, decriminalizing homosexuality.
In Kenya and Botswana, human rights organizations are still fighting the battle to provide rights in courts. In contrast, the situation has eased a bit in Zimbabwe after their homophobic president lost his seat.
Known for rigorously persecuting homosexuals and often hands down harsh prison sentences, Uganda still bears discrimination for the LGBT community.