Nairobi — The West African country of Cameroon has many problems, reflected in its dismal social indicators. But it is the issue of homosexuality that seems to excite the most comment from government and church leaders.
Homosexuality is illegal in Cameroon, as it is in 76 other countries around the world. But in Cameroon the police and courts seek to actively prosecute. Around a dozen people are jailed for homosexual offences each year. Even more disturbing is the homophobia that is being stoked in society, and the violence that hate can release.
IRIN’s new film, “Hate Unleashed” – Homophobia in Cameroon, follows lawyer Alice Nkom as she seeks to challenge the prosecutions, and provide some care and support to those who have been incarcerated.
It also hears from a group of young men as they discuss the risks and challenges of being gay in Cameroon.
“Will I be found tomorrow lying at the end of a road [dead], or at home? I don’t know,” one says. “How do I bother anyone by being gay? I do not see how. I don’t prevent anyone from having children with his wife. I do not prevent him from going to Heaven, or to Hell, or Purgatory.”