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Burkina Faso Moves Toward Criminalizing Homosexuality

© Photo Burkina Faso's presidency / Burkina Faso's Transition President, Ibrahim TraoreBurkina Faso's Transition President, Ibrahim Traore
Burkina Faso's Transition President, Ibrahim Traore - Sputnik Africa, 1920, 11.07.2024
Burkina Faso has joined the list of over thirty African countries that condemn homosexuality with a plan to ban single-sex activities. Yet penalties were not specified, as the text of the decree must be adopted by the transitional parliament.
Burkina Faso's weekly Council of Ministers session with President Ibrahim Traore as the chairperson adopted several critical reports and decisions aimed at the nation's smooth functioning on Wednesday.
One major outcome was the adoption of the preliminary draft of the new Code of Persons and Family (CPF), as presented by Minister of Justice Edasso Rodrigue Bayala. It formally bans and penalizes homosexuality.

"Henceforth, homosexuality and associated practices will be punished by the law," Bayala said.

The revised CPF takes into account socio-cultural realities, including changes in name attribution and nationality forfeiture for actions against national interests. The CPF sets the marriage age at 18, with exceptions at 16 with judicial approval, and recognizes customary and religious marriages in the civil status register. It also allows parents to inherit from their descendants.
In another significant step, the Council established the National Identification Coordination Authority. This new structure, attached to the Burkinabe Presidency, will manage the strategic plan for a cohesive national identification system. It will ensure the interoperability of all identification initiatives and propose modernization strategies.
In August last year, Burkina Faso's Higher Communications Council (CSC) banned the broadcasting of television channels that "promote homosexuality" in the country, according to the announcement.
According to the CSC, this is a step to protect kids and ensure that television channels aimed at children and adolescents "are free of any homosexual content or scenes," as reported by the state-run Burkina Faso Information Agency.