Roundtable: Identity, politics and law in global battles over homosexuality

Why do we see an upsurge around the world in court cases concerning same sex intimacy – from decriminalization of sodomy to marriage equality? This roundtable presents findings from a LawTransform/UiB project on  “Sexual & Reproductive Rights Lawfare: Global Battles”. The project examines the use of courts and law in battles for and against rights concerning sexual orientation, gender identity and abortion in different parts of the worlds. It seeks to understand both what drives these cases into the courts and what the effects are of fighting such battles thought legal cases rather than in the parliamentary arena.

This roundtable zooms in on the part of the project that deals with the current politicization of homosexuality on much of the African continent, and will discuss both how this differs across the region and in comparison to similar battles in other regions of the world.

  • Introduction by Charles Ngwena on Sexuality and Identity in Contemporary Africa
  • Lawfare over homosexuality in the African context is discussed by Rudo Chigudu (Zimbabwe); Colbert Ojiambo (Kenya); Ayo Sogunro (Nigeria) John Kunda (Zambia); Adrian Jjuuko (Uganda); Chrispine Sibande and Alan Msosa (Malawi).
  • How this compares with global patterns are discussed by Vikram Kolmannskog (India); Camila Gianella/Bruce Wilson (Latin America); Alicia Yamin (USA) Malcolm Langford (Eurpópe/Global)
  • Moderator: Vegard Vibe

See event on Facebook here!

Charles Ngwena, LLB, LLM (Wales), LLD (Free State),, is Professor Law in the Centre for Human Rights, University of Pretoria, South Africa. He has taught at law schools in the United Kingdom, Swaziland, South Africa, United States and Canada. He has published widely on issues at the intersection between human rights and health care, including HIV/AIDS and reproductive and sexual health with a focus on the African region. He is also a disability rights expert. Prof Ngwena serves on editorial committees and editorial boards of a number of international journals. He is the Convening Editor of the African Disability Rights Yearbook and Section Editor of Developing World Bioethics (for Law and Bioethics). He serves on the editorial boards of Medical Law International and the Journal of African Law. He is co-editor of Employment equity law (with JL Pretorius & E Klink) which was first published in 2001 by Butterworths and is updated annually. With Rebecca Cook, he is co-editor of Health and human rights (Ashgate, 2007). With Ebenezer Durojaye, he is co-editor of Strengthening sexual and reproductive rights in the African region through human rights (Pretoria University Law Press, 2014). He has a forthcoming book – What is Africanness to me?: Contesting Nativism in Race, Culture and Sexualities.

Read panel member biographies here!