Gay rights activists looking for new recruits in Liberia By TAMBA JEAN-MATTHEW in Dakar | Saturday, January 21  2012 at  12:27

Protesters scamper for safety as police disperse a crowd protesting over the presence of alleged gays in the Kenya port town of Mombasa. Liberia is embroiled in big debate about gay rights. FILE| AFRICA REVIEW 

Same sex campaigners in Liberia are on mass mobilization exercise to attain a five thousand mark that would qualify them to push for legitimacy in the country, sources have confirmed.

The group leaders Leroy “Ponpon” Archie and Abraham Kamara said they had already amassed about $4 million in their coffers from supporters abroad.

While Liberian Constitution criminalises gay and lesbian activities, the duo have vowed that they will not bow to any pressure until the ‘Movement in Defence of Gay and Lesbian Rights’ is legally recognized in the West African nation.

They added that they would use the available funds to attain the required number of signatures to petition Liberian legislators to pass Gay Rights Bill.

The move has however sparked widespread condemnation from Liberians including some members of the country’s bi-cameral legislature.

Death

Last week the two men narrowly escaped death at the University of Liberia where they had gone to launch the membership drive for the movement.

In an apparent reaction to exercise, the Speaker of the House of Representatives in Liberia, Alex Tyler told reporters that his colleagues have already denounced the same.
“I am a Methodist and traditionalist, I will never support a gay bill because it is damaging to the survival of the country,” he said.

He warned that any bill introduced in the House in favour of protecting gay and lesbian rights “will be thrown in the ‘Du or Montserrado River”.

Analysts are however saying that Liberia could soon enact gay rights bill given the fact that the country’s Constitution is modelled after the US.