Guyanese Muslims to resist decriminalizing Homosexual laws – CIOG
The Muslim Community will continue to resist any decriminalization of homosexual laws and practices locally.
This is according to President of the Central Islamic Organization (CIOG) Fazal Feroze, which represents a large section of the Guyanese Muslim population.
According to the CIOG President, while he has not been presented with any formal proposal from the Guyana Government as it relates to amending the Laws, he is aware of a promised consultation on the matter.
He said that he is cognizant of the fact that Guyana has signed on to several international conventions that would speak on the matter of homosexuality and the death penalty among others.
According to Feroze, through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the CIOG had been informed sometime back of a promised consultation on the matters at hand.
He was quick to point out that while the Muslim Community will speak out against any such proposal he cannot make any more definitive statements yet.
Feroze told this publication yesterday that at present the CIOG is not aware of the “full ramifications of what is being proposed.”
According to the CIOG head, while the Muslim Community would not support such homosexual postures, it will not discriminate.
He says that the Islamic teachings would not allow the community to discriminate.
In seeking to expand on his position despite not being in possession of the full implications of what is being proposed, he said that any such changes to the legislation would have to be accompanied by a public education campaign.
He said that the Muslim community would be opposed to persons going to schools teaching children that there is nothing wrong with homosexuality.
Feroze reminded also of the previous instance in 2003 when the Government had made similar intimations.
According to Feroze, should the administration pass a law where a legal union between two men or women is condoned then a Muslim Marriage Officer could be found in breach of the law for refusing to partake in such practice.
“We still don’t know the full ramifications,” said Feroze, who added also that on the issue of the death penalty, Islamic law does provide for interpretations.
He said that he is fully cognizant of the fact that Guyana is not an Islamic State and reminded that the Muslim community will wait and see what proposals are being made by the Guyana Government.
There has been intimation on the part of the administration, to commence some sort of consultation process with a view to soliciting the views of Guyanese on the matters.
The United Nations has over the years been pressuring the country to repeal its homosexuality laws as well as the death penalty provisions.
Human Services and Social Security Minister, Jenifer Webster says that the matter will be dealt with at the level of a Special Parliamentary Select Committee.