Malawi to stop enforcing anti-LGBT laws

The Justice Ministry of Malawi has instituted a moratorium on the enforcement of the country’s anti-LGBT laws.  Parliamentarians are currently reviewing a colonial-era statute that bans homosexual acts.

Malawi first suspended enforcement of the law in 2012, because government officials felt it violated a constitutional human rights guarantee.  However, earlier this month a gay couple were detained by a neighborhood watch group and turned over to police.  Prosecutors have since dropped the charges against them.

Former President Joyce Banda first first announce her support for decriminalizing same-sex relations in 2012, a stance that has been continued by her successor Peter Mutharkika.  Gift Trapence, the director of the human rights group the Centre for the Development of the People told the Associated Press that the government ought to “get rid of discriminatory laws altogether, including those that criminalize consensual sex between adults of the same sex.”

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