murder of LGBTQ rights activist

murder of LGBTQ rights activist

In Kenya, police are investigating the murder of an LGBTQ rights activist. His body was discovered in a trunk, sparking a national outcry.

The body of Edwin Chiloba, a 25-year-old designer and model, was found on January 4, 2023 on the side of the road some 40 km from the town of Eldoret in the Rift Valley, report the local media. A police spokesman, Resila Onyango, told the daily The Star that the motive for the murder was at this time unknown. “Experts are investigating the subject“, he says.

We have a suspect in custody, we are investigating his role in this murder.“says Peter Kimulwo, Head of Investigations at the Office of the Directorate of Criminal Investigations in Eldoret.”We are holding him as the prime suspect as there are clues pointing to him but this is all under investigation“, he adds. According to him, the suspect is a long-time friend of the victim. The police are also looking for people who were seen loading a metal trunk into a car at the victim’s home.

Many discriminations against LGBTQ people

LGBTQ rights activists have called for the investigation to move forward quickly. In Kenya, LGBTQ people face precariousness and discrimination in a predominantly Christian and conservative society where homosexuality is taboo, as in many African countries.

Sexual relations between people of the same sex are punishable by law, with penalties of up to 14 years in prison. “Continuing to see an escalation in violence targeting LGBTQ+ Kenyans is concerning“, the Kenyan Human Rights Commission said in a statement.”Every day, the rights of LGBTQ+ people are violated with no real consequences for the perpetrators“, she denounces. The Commission urges the police “to carry out rapid investigations and ensure that the killers are apprehended and prosecuted“.

The LGBTQ Feminist Forum, in western Kenya, where Edwin Chiloba lived, points out that the designer had used “fashion to deconstruct gender and promote the rights of the marginalized community“.”We want to know, as a community, what happened to Edwin, why he was murdered and who deposited his body at the scene“, says the group’s program director, Becky Mududa. In April last year, another LGBTQ activist was found murdered in Kenya.