United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon says he knows that the Government of Zambia has formed a principled position in promoting and respecting the human rights of everybody, regardless of age, religion or sexual orientation, in line with the fundamental principles of the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights to which Zambia is a party.
Ban Ki-Moon made this revelation when he met president Michael Sata at State House on Sunday. According to press statement issued by Eimear McDermott of the UN Communications Group, Ban Ki- Moon added that human beings are born with equal rights and that he has been urging the world leaders of many countries, in particular those where people have been discriminated against, and even punished and criminalized, based on their sexual orientation, to form and uphold principled positions that protect the rights of all.
Following his official visit to State House, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon made a statement to the press emphasizing that he was happy with the discussions and extremely impressed by the progress being made in Zambia in promoting democratic governance. He also commended Zambia’s progress towards achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), noting that the discussions with President Sata had touched on how the United Nations can continue to work together with the Government of the Republic of Zambia in realising the MDGs.
The Secretary-General added that he had invited President Sata to the Rio+20 Summit in June. The Summit will provide an important opportunity for world leaders to discuss sustainable development, climate change, water scarcity, food crisis, energy shortages, gender empowerment, and global health issues.
The Zambia government has not yet responded to the statement by the UN on the rights of gays.
During the run up to the elections that brought the PF to power, the issue of gay rights became a hot issue. Famous journalists Chanda Chimba repeatedly explained that if the PF won, they would legalise homosexuality in Zambia because they have been sponsored to do so.
Chimba was demonised and even sued.
When British Prime Minister David Cameron said in November 2011 that British international aid will be tied to respect for gay rights, Zambia’s foreign Affairs minister Given Lubinda reacted sharply and told off Cameron.
But it was the same Given Lubinda who was escorting Ban Ki-Moon when he was promoting gay rights in Zambia.
Lubinda has also not said anything probably because he knows his cabinet has since resolved to support rights of the game community.