Umar Muda a member of the house of Representatives on the 5th of April, 2022, as reported by SAHARA REPORTERS – introduced and read a bill to further criminalize cross-dressing In Nigeria with liable punishment of up to 6month imprisonment or a fine of five hundred thousand naira.
This bill seeks to further enforce the SAME-SEX MARRIAGE PROHIBITION ACTS “SSMPA 2014” and amend the extension to include cross-dressing as one of the offences under the act, as if cross-dressing in Nigeria ever seize being a crime. It is yet another day in the unsafe targeted lives of Queer/LGBTQ+ people by the Nigerian government while neglecting all systemic emerging odds of the state. The Nigerian government and its law enforcement agents would better criminalize the minority for living than fix the simplest potholes on the federal roads in Nigeria.
The proposed bill doesn’t just aim to further criminalize LGBTQ+ but also aims at oppressing and taking up our tiniest freedom of expression and visibility, constantly painting us as the most social problem that needs to be immediately eradicated before the system can function while sailing the nation close to the wind.
Ahead of the 2015 elections was the ANTI-GAY laws “SSMPA” and this year, 7 years after, ahead of the 2023 elections is a need for the expansion of the “SSMPA” waved criminalizing cross-dressing, the most understood term for “Transgender” in Nigeria up to 6month imprisonment or paying an exploitative fine of five hundred thousand nairas. It’s no doubt that the Nigerian government take pleasure in the unhealthy political strategy of baiting LGBTQ+ minority lives to please the masses in exchange for their desirable biased thumbprint on their ballot papers.
This is because hypocrisy hides in the heart of imperial religious practices in Nigeria and homophobia/transphobia is a key to unlocking the masses – The idea of “SSMPA” happened as bait to catch the attention of Nigerian mass ignorant bigots in exchange for 8years trust. However, the proposed read bill is yet to be passed aimed target at Bobrisky(Okuneye Idris Olanrewaju ), Denrele(Adenrele Oluwafemi Edun), and James Brown(James Chukwueze Obialor) and other cross-dressers in Nigeria.
We hope that someday, Nigeria and her people would realize the great harm they have caused for a better inclusive and respectful change.
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The phrase that comes to our mind at first might be sexual intercourse activities but sex does not just mean intercourse, it is definitely beyond its typical meaning, it also refers to the categories to which people are typically assigned at birth based on physical characteristics (genitalia) by a gynaecologist.
Sex and Sexuality
Sex according to the construct of the social and political category is the perceived physiological identity difference between persons who are imposed, assigned males, females, and intersex… based on genitalia. I believe this is insignificant not just because the discussion of sex “genitalia” should end at birth, but more because it’s a yardstick to further discrimination, enabling inequality and oppression in most societies.
Rather than for sex to be enjoyed mutually as intercourse to its best, it’s further otherwise used as a tool to subjugate, define and measure the individual capacity to function outside the bedroom.
Society often sees males and females as a biological binary. However, there are issues with this distinction. The chromosomal markers are not always clear-cut, some babies assigned “males” at birth are born with two or three X chromosomes, just as some babies assigned “females” are born with a Y chromosome and the base of it, we all carry the hormonal structure of both estrogen and testosterone at a uniquely different spectrum of overtime development. Also, some babies are born with genitalia ambiguous genitalia. Being intersex can mean a person has genitals or internal sex organs that fall outside of “ typical” binary categories. Or, a person might have a different combination of chromosomes. Some people do not know that they are intersex until they reach puberty. This explains that biology is complex and bodily development could be a spectrum of growth. Sexuality is not just about sex and certain body part that is associated with sexual activities.
Sexuality includes sexual orientation, such as who a person is attracted to, sexual identity as well as sexual fantasies and attitudes and values related to sex. Sexual orientation refers to sexual and romantic feelings for people of the same gender, a different gender, or more than one gender. People who identify themselves as “straight” or “heterosexual” typically feel only attracted to people of the other heterosexual or straight orientation of a different gender than their own. People who identify as “lesbian” or “gay” typically feel attracted to people of the same gender as themselves. People who identify as “bisexual” typically feel attracted to both the opposite and same gender as themselves. People who identify as “Pansexual” do not just feel attracted to more than one gender but they do not see the existence of gender in their romantic feelings and relationship. People who use the term “queer” may use it to mean other terms that describe their experiences beyond the societal matching binary. Sexuality is a spectrum of sexual attractions which may be subjected to evolving changes in sexual preferences. Sexual orientation can change over time for some people. A person might be attracted only to people of the same gender as themselves, and then later be attracted to more than one gender. This means that sexual orientation is diverse for some people.
Gender and Gender relation
The World Health Organization WHO explains gender as “Gender refers to the characteristics of women, men, girls and boys that are socially constructed. This includes norms, behaviours and roles associated with being a woman, man, girl or boy, as well as relationships with each other. As a social construct, gender varies from society to society and can change over time”. Based on this definition, gender is seen as a socio-cultural construct where roles and behaviour are determined and distinguished by the society based on perceived characteristics of man/woman, boy or girl. The above definition shows the binary idea of the societal class system leaving out other persons who do not fit into the binary norms, roles, behaviours, and characteristics as insignificant. However, the concept of gender has enjoyed frequent usage but has been subjected to diverse definitions and interpretations. Gender is widely agreed to be a social construct that arises out of culture and cuts across all parts of society. For so long in history, gender and sex have been defined in binary between male and female, man and woman, boy and girl eradicating the existence of others that do not fit in or outside the binary based on gender relations provided as the standard of interrelationships and dynamics of power between binary gender in the society (man and woman) —
Gender relations define how people interact with others and how others relate to them, depending on their attributed gender, and they should be analyzed within the cultural context in which they develop——The Psychology of Gender and Health, 2017.
Gender relation across all societies is not just skewed as parasitic and exploitative of women, it also erases other forms of gender existence and denies the ability to tap into the diversity of self, basically making persons who do not exist according to the binary system dysfunctional and a problem. Understanding that gender and gender relation are distinctive and roles are spelt out according to the structure of the society and culture, there is hardly any society where the roles to describe masculinity and femininity enable equality.
Gender relations in Nigeria only recognize Man and Woman class system and this is enabled by the patriarchal nature of the Nigerian society —- a system based on distinctive sexual physiological characteristics at binary level male and female, where persons who are assigned male at birth are societally ascribed as men and females as women. Patriarchy is the authoritative male centred system that is oppressive and discriminatory, it is enforced through an early socialization process that continues to instil discriminatory attitudes in children that grow up to be adults. A “male” child is labelled as a “boy”, trained to grow up into a man expected to exude rigidity, authoritative in the society and not a simple form of softness and weakness as such traits are perceived as feminine while the “female” child is labelled as a girl, socialised to be supportive to their husband and expected to be dependent, labour for free and never to show any form of bravery as such trait is commended masculine neglecting individual capacity while constructing them into binary depleted by physiological sex organ.
However, persons who do not meet the standard of humanity as to the binary structure of society are targeted as deviant minorities, invalidated and violently eradicated. In no doubt, society has its expectations and individuals have roles to perform to meet the expectations for the functionality of the society in contexts that align with the societal values and norms.
Nigerian society does not just encourage marginalization and inequality, it also doesn’t give room for diversity of self.
Despite the gender binary documentation in the state, there is the gradual emerging “pity” recognition of “third gender”, as persons who do not identify with the gender binary in very fainted parts of Nigerian social institutions are represented under inclusion and diversity projects mostly incorporated by members of the sexual and gender diverse marginalised community. However, understanding gender diversity is understanding that sex is not gender and it shouldn’t be a determinant factor for individual functionality. .“Someone who identifies with the sex that they were assigned at birth is called “cisgender.” “Someone who is not cisgender and does not identify within the gender binary of man or woman, boy or girl may identify as nonbinary, gender fluid, or genderqueer, among other identities. A person whose gender identity is not totally based on sex assigned at birth might identify as transgender which is a bigger umbrella term.
It’s clear that as much as gender is a societal construct mostly related to binary, gender is more and beyond what it may have seemed to be as explained. Gender is a spectrum of characteristics, traits, expressions, many other internal and external factors and none that holistically represents individuality, which may be related to masculinity, femininity, neither, both and none that is not exactly the socially constructed identity of the man and woman binary. Gender is who you are and how you see yourself internally and externally as an individual. This means that there are more than two genders because a person may identify and express their gender in the most suitable ways. Gender expression is how a person chooses to present their gender to the outside and gender identity is how and what a person feels internal and resonates with. This means that a person may identify as a woman based on their reality and experiences but present as masculine to the outside world although what is considered masculine and feminine changes over culture and tradition.The terms sex, sexuality and gender remain concerned topic in the world of today and this is because of distinguishing human diversity agitating for equality and inclusion. For so long, many societies have enforced the idea that a person is either a man or a woman based on their sex physiological characteristics and the idea doesn’t work for each other because sex and gender are two different things. Sex ends at birth, sex is a person’s physical bodily characteristics at birth, and gender is all and beyond a person’s identities, expressions, values and societal roles.
In conclusion, The principle of equality may be forged from the gender binary class system, we can not agitate for equality when there is no room for diversity. Humanity is diverse and there may not be an exact balance of inequality if there is no room for affirmation of self in diversity. Our experiences are totally not based on the outside but also include the inside. Equality might unfairly constrain us to the subject of oppression and class. Clamouring for equality may not be as strong as the liberation of human nature of diversity just as the nature of the universe there in and out.
An Incubation program for Nigerian Queer Digital Creators The Queercity Media and Productions Lagos, Nigeria invites LGBT+ West African content creators, digital artists, and creatives at large to harness a creative think tank whose work seeks to further the creative, social, political, and economic liberation of LGBT+ Nigerians. Tinkers Tank is a 6 weeks digital […]
Timeless Queer Defiance and it's consequences in Nigeria With Chude –
"Defiance comes with consequences and I am comfortable with it". He speaks about gay rights in the Nigerian churches, at conferences and anywhere. On this episode of the Queercity podcast, we would be experiencing what the reality of speaking for LGBT+ rights in Nigeria is for Nigeria's own Chude Jideonwo. Chude is known for his active amplification of minorities issues with his big show #WithChude, where he has also created space to help bring Queer persons' narratives safely to the mainstream media.
Chude speaks of how empathy could be an approach to fighting for the rights of sexual minorities, and to furtherly engaging violently oppressive systems. Behind the scenes packing and Bisi Alimi's appearance on “The Dawn” in 2004, and the interview with Faraphina magazine
Timeless Queer Defiance and its consequences in Nigeria with @chude Jideonwo
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Credit Executive Producer: Queercity Media and Productions @Queercitymediaandproductions
Hosted and Produced by: Olaide Kayode Timileyin(QueerNerd) @OKTIMILEYIN
Guest: Chude Jideonwo
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Rex Okechukwu Opara Jr., a.k.a. Raldie Young, is a Lagos-based music producer and singer-songwriter. Over the past decade, Rex has produced an impressive catalogue of independent releases inspired by neo-soul, R&B, hip-hop and African influences. He also frequently collaborates as a producer with numerous artists in Nigeria’s underground music scene, works as a graphic designer and co-hosts the queer podcast “We Don’t Have A Name For This Podcast”. “Music is the way I express my thoughts and feelings and document my experiences as an outsider,” says Rex. “It’s also a way of reaching out to outsiders like me.
Amara, the Lesbian. is a queer woman living and loving in Nigeria. a storyteller who is dedicated to sharing queer joy, stories, struggles, visibility and queer living in Nigeria, through her YouTube channel, her writings and her life in general.
Godwin Harrison (Writer/Director/producer) A graduate of chemical engineering. In the year 2008-2009 he a freelance script writer to some asabawood producers. In 2015, he produced/directed his first featured length film “the last days”. A faith based film. His movies have always talked about societal activism. He is the CEO of HUG MEDIA CONCEPT; An independent production house focus on making societal change using the media. His recent short film ” broken Rainbow” just won 2 international awards for best international short film of 2021.
SUMMARY OF BROKEN RAINBOW: Broken Rainbow tells the story of three rainbow friends ( TETEH, TERFA AND DIWI) who have undergone humiliation by their families because of their sexuality. The film gains momentum when DIWI set up video leaked online and his family came to know of his sexuality. Unable to bear the societal and family discrimination he committed suicide. TERFA (a drag artiste) comes out to his family and was kicked out of his family. TETEH was forced by his mother to undergo Deliverance for his sexuality (conversion therapy). Unable to cope he had to move out of his family house and move in with his lover KEM. KEM is a homophobic gay man who hates himself and his kind for no just cause. At the end, Teteh after contracting the AIDS virus from Kem had to live for his happiness alone. He paid for his mothers breast surgery after the church abandons her and there she knew that….A broken rainbow no matter how many times you try to break it, you still will not stop its shine.
Broken rainbow won best international short film -:1) malmo international LGBTQ short film festival 2) Melbourne LGBTQ short film festival Official selection @ best of the best lgbtq short film/ houston lgbtq short film festival/ bite size short film festival
Yahaya is a self-taught fashion designer with extensive background in leading operations and teams, events and project management, retail sales and talent management.
With his namesake brand, he explores traditional African heritage and its re-interpretation into contemporary fashion in a way that enables for self expression and preserve history.
His glamorous artisanal and sustainable garments tell elaborate narratives that are autobiographical, often reflecting upon the his queer identity and clash of ancestral history as a person of Yoruba Nigerian descent.
While his clothes act as defiance, the bigger picture is to create a social impact on individuals and communities, change the general mindset towards queer expression; and contribute to a kinder, sustainable planet.
Seyi mint began his career fully as an Actor and Vocalist in ( 2017 ) with playing extra on film productions and backup singer at events when he was casted to play Dexter on a web series [ Back to school ] in 2018 . Since then, He has been casted in telenovela [ HUSTLE ] and feature films [ DAIRIES , BOOKER , WHO’S THE BOSS ]. Seyi has also worked behind the scenes as a Talent executives on films, Tv series Oga pastor ( 2019 ) , smart money woman( 2020) , the wait ( 2021 ) , Namaste Wahala ( 2021 ) , Who’s the boss ( 2020 ) , Dod ( 2021 ) , Foreigner’s god ( post production ) , Lockdown ( 2021 ) .
In 2019 , Seyi mint was shortlisted as part of a 20 man urban choir . Loud urban choir is known for its phenomenal performances that has gotten them to share stages with Burna , Phyno , wizkid etc . They have also gone round the country performing as thousands of people fall in love with them.
Emmanuel Owusu Bonsu popularly known as Wanlov the Kubolor is a Ghanaian & Romanian music maker, filmmaker, and activist. Kubolor plays the guitar & koshkas and speaks Pidgin English, Ga, Twi, English, and Romanian.
Kubolor is also part of the satirical duo FOKN Bois, with M3NSA, who are credited with creating the world’s first Pidgin Musical “Coz Ov Moni”. He has collaborated with acts like King Ayisoba, Gyedu-Blay Ambolley, Sena Dagadu, Alostmen, and Sister Deborah.
Kubolor produces talents that have positive social messages as he is a strong advocate in Ghana for Human Rights and is outspoken on environmental protection & corruption.
Kubolor is popular for his humor, bravery, and unorthodox views on varying topics. He travels the world barefoot making his memories and connections to places more intimate.