House of Reps introduce bill prohibiting cross dressing, propose six months jail term for offenders

House of Reps introduce bill prohibiting cross dressing, propose six months jail term for offenders

House of Representatives has introduced a bill to prohibit cross-dressing with an amendment to the Same-Sex (Prohibition) Act. The amendment, spons

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House of Representatives has introduced a bill to prohibit cross-dressing with an amendment to the Same-Sex (Prohibition) Act.

The amendment, sponsored by a member of the ruling All Progressives Congress, Muda Umar (APC, Bauchi), seeks to amend sections 4 and 5 of the principal act.

The bill was read for the first time on the floor of the House on Tuesday.

The 2013 Same-Sex Prohibition bill was signed into law by former President Goodluck Jonathan despite opposition from the international community, particularly the United States and the United Kingdom.

Jonathan signed the bill into law on January 17, 2014.

The then U.S. Secretary of State, John Kerry, had said the law “dangerously restricts freedom of assembly, association, and expression for all Nigerians.”

The existing act prescribes 14 years in imprisonment for same-sex marriage and 10 years imprisonment for aiding and abetting the act.

Subsection 3(1) Cross-dressing whether done publicly is prohibited.

(2) A person shall be deemed to have committed the offence publicly where it is published or displayed publicly notwithstanding that it was committed privately or in a place that would have ordinarily been described as private.

“Provided that this section of this Act shall not apply to cross-dressing in the course of a stage play or any bonafide public entertainment,”

The bill is also proposing an amendment to section 5 by introducing clause 4 on punishment for engaging in cross-dressing.

“A person engaging in cross-dressing is guilty of an offence and liable to imprisonment of 6months or a fine of five hundred thousand naira.

The bill still has several stages to cross to become a law.