Jordan Bruno
Jordan Bruno

Mr Gay World Jordan Bruno has condemned news that a Tanzanian Regional Commissioner is forming a task force to identify and arrest LGBTIQ people in their country.

Last week, Dar es Salaam Regional Commissioner Paul Makonda reportedly announced a special committee to investigate and discipline homosexuals.

“If you know any gays … report them to me,” Makonda told reporters, according to CNN.

Paul Makonda

Since gaining power in 2015, President John Magufuli has supervised a crackdown on sexual minority rights.

Speaking about the crackdown, Mr Gay World said he finds it enormously unfortunate that Tanzania has decided to target and attack the LGBTQ+ people of its country.

“The Queer community within Tanzania are already marginalized, discriminated and bullied, so it is discouraging to hear that the government wants to create a task force to encourage these values of hatred,” said Bruno.

“I remind the Tanzanian government that they have a duty to protect all the citizens of Tanzania and ensure that every individual has access to human rights and is free from discrimination.

“As a member of the LGBTQ+ community, I am beyond disappointed to hear what is happening to my community and hope the queer community can remain strong and resilient in the face of adversity.”

Overnight it has been reported that ten men were arrested for allegedly conducting a same-sex marriage ceremony on the Tanzanian island of Zanzibar.

A human rights defender in Zanzibar, who asked not to be named because he fears for his safety, told CNN: “They were just at the beach enjoying themselves and the police ambushed them.

“This was not a gay wedding as the police say. They always use that as an excuse,” he added.

The European Union has also recalled the head of its delegation to Tanzania because of what it calls a “deterioration of the human rights and rule of law” in the east African nation.

Tanzania’s government has distanced itself from the move, saying that “Mr Makonda was only airing his personal opinion”, not government policy.

It added that the government would “continue to respect and uphold all human rights as provided for in the country’s constitution”.