#YNaijaEndSARSupdate: Nigeria’s kick against #QueerNigerianLivesMatter indicates it is not ready to end homophobia | #NonBinary #Intersectional

When the Feminist Coalition released a series of tweets supporting the #QueerNigerianLivesMatter movement, the Nigerian Twitter space literally turned on its head. The number of negative tweets that followed was indicative of one major thing- Nigeria was not ready to speak up against its homophobia and would be happy it remained that way.

Going through the replies of the Feminist Coalition’s tweets would have made anyone who was of the LGBTQ+ community or an ally depressed. Only a few responses, mostly from allies, were positive. Some felt this was the case of a hijack, while others felt the LGBTQ+ community should have waited until the current protests died down before speaking up on any issue concerning them.

 

Would Nigeria ever have a moment where queer people are allowed to come out as a group to protest? That’s the first question. Secondly, will their safety be guaranteed? Probably not because the Same-Sex (Prohibition) Act prohibits such a gathering. So why are some protesters uncomfortable with queer people highlighting the fact that they are also being oppressed and victims of police brutality?

These are the questions that creep up when one ponders the suggestion that queer people should not speak up now. The push for the wait could mean Nigerians are not interested in ending homophobia anytime soon and are just looking for excuses; likely not to give a listening ear if any queer related advocacy pops up in the future.

A Twitter user @iam_ThePaulo who noticed people trying to shut out the voices of the LGBTQ+ community gave an interesting take on the matter. He wrote in his tweet:

“The kind of tweets I’ve been seeing from Nigerians ehn… It’s as if if SARS only kidnapped, extorted, killed and harassed the LGBTQ. Some of you would be okay with it #EndSARS.”

His take mirrors the reality of the LGBTQ+ community in Nigeria. This is because many Nigerians have stated on social media wholeheartedly that they support the police harassment of queer people and even lend a hand when jungle justice is meted upon them.

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