The Centre for the Development of People (Cedep) has received an award in Denmark for contributing to changing society’s perception on homosexuality amid socio-cultural and legal challenges.
Cedep research coordinator Victor Billy Gama said the award is a motivation for the organisation to continue working hard to protect the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) persons in Malawi.
He said Cedep is dedicating the award to African countries where LGBTI communities are living in trying times.
“The situation for LGBTI communities in Africa is like a bush fire. If we fail to control it, it will spread all over. In January this year Nigeria’s President signed the same sex marriage prohibition law.
“This was closely followed by Uganda. Such laws contravene rights to privacy, freedom of association, faith and belief,” said Gama, adding that African leaders also use LGBTI to score cheap political points.
Presenting the award, Danish Minister of Trade and Development Cooperation Mogens Jansen hailed Cedep for successfully putting LGBTI issues on the national agenda in Malawi.
“By boldly communicating via the media, Cedep spurs an open debate on homosexuality, which would have been unthinkable just few years ago,” said Jansen.