The Gambia is a tiny West-African nation which in 2012 ranked 165th in the Human Development Index (HDI) between Djibouti and Benin making it one of the nation with a low HDI and as such The Gambia is very keen on developing and is looking to increase tourism into the country.
One of the first steps in increasing the pink tourism to The Gambia was the threat to behead homosexuals in 2008 made by no-one less than President Jammeh. But the president’s pro-gay tourism attitude doesn’t end here as recently as this summer he stated that:
Any day you turn from being a man to a woman, don’t step your foot into The Gambia because we will never allow you here. One thing I will never compromise is homosexuality. I will never compromise it. Those talking about human rights, and saying that preventing homosexuality is a violation of human rights, I have one message for them and let them go and burn their tails in hell. Gambians will remain Gambians and a man will marry a woman and not the other way round. Homosexuality will never happen here.
Apart from his confusion about gender identity & transexuality with homosexuality I think he is very clear what he thinks of welcoming gay tourists in his country or making gays who call The Gambia their homeland feel at home.
Enough fooling around.
As The Gambia is a country governed by a Muslim dictator this lack of invitation wasn’t everything and Yahya Jammeh has recently made it crystal clear even to the thickest of his listeners that “promoting homosexuality” which I think is a code for treating homosexuals (and by extension bisexuals as well) like people is a declaration of war on most importantly Islam, but also Christianity and even the existence of the human race. Given the situation of human rights and economic development I am really not keen to see what will happen if jihadis & crusaders take up the cause against the LGBT population.
But if you thought that homophobic Muslims don’t have a sense of humour consider the explanation that Imam Omar Kuta offered for the country’s long tradition of homophobia:
Anything that does not match with the teachings of the Holy Qur’an and the Prophet will only take the society backward
Right. So allowing basic human rights into The Gambia (which by the way acted as the host for the African Commission on Human and People’s Right at least in 2008 despite its appalling human rights record) is going to take society backwards. By taking the society backwards the country will at least move closer to Niger the country that came in last on the 186th place in 2012’s HDI ranking and also happens to be a Muslim majority country.
Now excuse me while I try not to wet myself with laughter.