High Court to view gay-themed movie
Publish date: 10 June 2019
Issue Number: 827
Diary: IBA Legalbrief Africa
Controversial gay-themed film Rafiki will be viewed in a Nairobi court to determine whether its ban should be lifted. It tells the story of a relationship between two young women amidst family and political pressures around LGBT rights in Kenya. The 2018 film was banned by the Kenya Film Classification Board (KFCB) 'due to its homosexual theme and clear intent to promote lesbianism in Kenya contrary to the law'. Legalbrief reports that the board asked film director Wanuri Kahiu to change the ending but he refused and the ban raised international outrage by the supporters of LGBT rights. Kahiu then sued the government to allow the film to be screened and become eligible to be submitted as Kenya's entry for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film at the Academy Awards. On 21 September, the High Court lifted the ban on the film, allowing it to be screened in the country for seven days. The Nairobi News reports that Justice James Makau last week ruled that the application by Kahiu was merited. The case continues.