Nigeria Frees 69 People Arrested Over Alleged Gay Wedding
Emell Adolphus READ TIME: 1 MIN.
A total of 69 people are now free after being apprehended by authorities for allegedly participating in a gay wedding in Nigeria, reported Reuters.
According to a lawyer representing the group, a Nigerian court released them on Tuesday after each posted a $645 bail.
"They are to provide sureties, who will submit their particulars to the court. So, the 69 suspects have been granted bail and I am processing their paperwork," said lawyer Ochuko Ohimor.
The suspects were also ordered to sign a register at the court in Warri town once a month until their next hearing, added Ohimor.
State prosecutors reportedly opposed the bail but the court ruled that the suspects should be released because they were not facing a capital offence, according to Ohimor.
Violating the anti-gay law in the country is punishable with a prison term of up to 14 years for those convicted. the Same Sex Marriage Prohibition Act, dubbed the "Jail the Gays"' bill, was passed and signed by President resident Goodluck Jonathan in 2014 It further criminalizes homosexuality and will endanger programs fighting HIV-AIDS in the gay community, Dorothy Aken'Ova, executive director of Nigeria's International Center for Reproductive Health and Sexual Rights told the Associated Press at the time of the bill's passing.