Four Nigerian men were sentenced to 15 lashes with a whip after an Islamic court in the northern city of Bauchi convicted them of having gay sex.
The four muslim men were beaten while in custody and were forced to plead guilty to engaging in homosexual activity, a gay rights activist reported. They were whipped publicly. The four men were among a group of people arrested late last year.
The court hearings in Bauchi city had been pushed back from January, when a mob, gathered outside the court, tried to stone the men and demanded that the judge sentenced them to death.
The men, all between the ages of 20 to 22, were sentenced and punished on Thursday (March 6) to 15 lashes. They also may face a year’s imprisonment if they cannot pay a fine of $120.
Dorothy Aken’Ova, a Nigeria-based gay rights activist, commented, “Rights groups [are] trying to raise the money – otherwise, they will remain in prison.
“The men should not have been convicted because they were beaten up, and their confessions forced,” she added.
Homosexuality is illegal in Nigeria under both Islamic and secular law. Under Islamic law in some northern Nigerian states, gay people can be sentenced to death by public stoning or lethal injection.
© 2014 GCN (Gay Community News). All rights reserved.