Allies, stop sensationalising the plight of African LGBTs

Published: October 20, 2014

Colin Stewart
Original Article:

“African LGBTs are not looking for Western saviours,” says Nigerian author and activist Yemisi Ilesanmi.  “We must all stand as equal partners in our quest to rid the world of inequalities. We don’t need sensationalism, we need our allies to walk their talk.”

To Ilesanmi, allies who “walk their talk” would present a realistic view of the complexities of LGBT life in Africa, without sensationalistic portrayals of “African lesbians and gays as helpless, unemployed, abused, victimised people who want to, nay NEED, to be saved.”

Cover of the book “Freedom to Love for All” by Yemisi Ilesanmi. (Click image for link to the book on

They would also assure African LGBT job applicants with equal treatment in employment. “One way our concerned Western LGBT comrades can help is not just parade us as unpaid storytellers but give us fair consideration when we apply for advertised jobs in their organisations,” she writes.
Ilesanmi, currently living in the United Kingdom, is founder and coordinator of the activist group Nigerian LGBTIs in Diaspora Against Anti-Same Sex Laws.  She is also the author of the book “Freedom To Love For ALL: Homosexuality is not Un-African,” available from Amazon in paperback and in Kindle editions.

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