ATTEMPTS by organisations and individuals to smuggle homosexuality into Zimbabwe’s education curriculum will not be tolerated and the country will not throw away its norms and culture in exchange for donations, a top government official has said.
Zimbabwe is among 35 African countries whose national constitutions do not condone the practice of homosexuality with the country’s 2006 revision to the criminal code expanding the penalty for sodomy.
This includes acts that “would be regarded by a reasonable person as an indecent” including two men holding hands, hugging or kissing”, which could attract an extended prison term. Addressing journalists during a curriculum review workshop in Darwendale last Friday, Education ministry spokesperson Taungana Ndoro said certain stakeholders were trying to set a homosexual agenda through donations.
“We have had others who have tried to come to the ministry only to hide these lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBTQ) issues inside, that they want to donate books to our schools,” he said.
“Imagine teaching our children that it’s okay for a woman to marry another woman. In this curriculum there is nothing about that, we don’t promote that, we don’t even want to elevate it to any portfolio, it’s not a priority.”
In February this year, Tanzania banned a popular series of children's books from schools, claiming they violated local cultural norms. Tanzanian Education minister Adolf Mkenda also announced that his government was monitoring libraries in both public and private schools to make sure books on homosexuality were not on their shelves.
Late former President Robert Mugabe described the homosexual community as “worse than dogs and pigs”, a stance which received lots of brickbats from the LGBTQ community.
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