Sunday, March 10, 2013

Yet Another Useless Charter By The Commonwealth

Last year, the Commonwealth, an organization I have long lost hope in, came up with a plan to draw up a new Charter after a lot of lobbying from Justice for Gay Africans (JfGA) which I co-founded and run and others. We were invited to the Consultation on the draft Charter and thought it was too cold and aimless.
Attending the Consultation to represent JfGA, I made a proposition speech berating the Charter as of no use and with no backbone. It had nothing in it addressing modern-day problems especially regarding sexuality. Considering the new level of violence and discrimination against Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Trans (LGBT) people in Commonwealth countries, you would think that such would be the main issue to address with a new Charter, coupled with gender and climate change issues.
At the Consultation which I attended, most of the people in the room agreed with my point. In fact, a lot of new converts joined that night to agree that it is time the Commonwealth stop the killings and violence against LGBT people after they had initially snorted at my mention of homosexuality.

Tomorrow, Monday 11th Marc, 2013, over one year after that Consultation, Queen Elizabeth II, in her capacity as the Head of the Commonwealth will sign that document into existence. But the disappointment is that it remains a useless document.

The new Commonwealth Charter has nothing new in it that makes it necessary or needful. It merely regurgitate existing old texts in former documents. This makes the document absolutely needless.

The Commonwealth will need to work harder and cleverly to bring about the inclusiveness, equity and justice which it mentioned in the Charter.

The Charter will give no backing to an argument for the dignity of LGBT people since it failed to mention LGBT or sexuality.

It is again an absolute disappointment and another missed opportunity for the organization to be on the side of the vulnerable and assert itself as respecting the dignity of life for all through mutual respect and equity and justice.

This is an absolute shame.

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