LGBTQ rights groups in Kenya have raised concerns about the sensationalization of Edwin Chiloba’s murder.
The activists faulted a section of leaders and the media for propagating homophobic and hate-based rhetoric. They said this only raises intolerance and violence against sexual and gender minorities.
“Homophobic and hate-based rhetoric by leaders and sensationalisation of Edwin Chiloba’s murder by the media only serves to incite violence against queer Kenyans,” they said.
The activists asked leaders and the media to exercise restraint in their language, reports, and actions.
The groups include the National Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission, Gay and Lesbian Coalition of Kenya, the Bold Network, Initiative for Equality and Non-Discrimination, Q-Initiative, Amnesty and Change.org.
“Online cyber-bullying using religion and culture raises the level of intolerance, hatred and violence against LGBTQ+ individuals,” they added.
The activists also called upon the government to reconsider repealing sections 162 and 165 of the penal code.
They said the sections indirectly criminalize consensual relations by LGBTQ+ persons, creating an environment for violence to thrive and go unpunished.
“It is time for our society to come together and stand up for the rights and safety of all people regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity,” they said.