Is the Ethiopian Interfaith Forum for Development or for Homophobia??? and the Support from The President’s Emergency Plan For AIDS Relief (PEPFAR/Emergency Plan) ???

By Mercy

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Ethiopian Interfaith Forum for Development, Dialogue and Action (EIFDDA) is an inter-faith consortium of 10 Faith Based Organizations(FBOs) that says “to improves the physical, spiritual, social and economic well-being of communities by effectively mobilizing religious societies to collaborate for change.” with current membership of ten Faith Based Organizations representing more than 97% of the population in the country. http://www.eifdda.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=23&Itemid=54

At the same time, this interfaith consortium is also highly engaged in demonizing homosexuals and propagating anti-homosexuality myths and “kill the homosexuals” campaigns by organizing national conferences and local anti-homosexuality workshops and training on the issues of “the western imported culture of homosexuality and its ‘disastrous’ effects in Ethiopia” across churches, mosques, schools and even healthcare facilities all over the country which is making the society especially the new generation more hostile and very cautious among each other to the so called signs of homosexuality among their peers, this is creating severe stigma and fear among  the LGBTI community in Ethiopia. There is also a growing trend of verbal/physical abuse and life threatening violence by friends, family members, teachers, mobs and in worst case by the law enforcement officers from time to time.

The Interfaith Consortium in partnership with United for Life Ethiopia, the local Pro-life, western Conservative Evangelicals ally organized two national anti-homosexuality conferences and pass a joint statement to plea the government to further restrict the practice of homosexuality in December, 2008 at UN Convention Center and June, 2012 at the newly built African Union headquarter in Addis Ababa.

Unfortunately, the corrupted and politicized Interfaith Consortium is doing nothing and remain silent in several pressing issues of the country; when the government was repeatedly and openly criticized by international human rights and press organizations as well as by some government officials from the European Community and United States for its abuse of freedom of the press and civic association and human rights since the introduction of  the restrictive charities and societies, press and anti-terrorism laws.

The Interfaith Consortium get its grant from many bilateral and multilateral international organizations including PEPFAR http://ethiopia.usaid.gov/category/partners/ethiopian-interfaith-forum-development

“We commend some of the works of the interfaith consortium in the areas of HIV Prevention, Orphan and Vulnerable Children and women empowerment but we strongly object the recent growing anti-homosexuality hate campaign and respectfully request the government, the consortium, PEPFAR and others development partners to carefully research and avoid the confusion of homosexuality with pedophilia, discuss and consider the growing hostility and dangerous consequences of the campaigns on the already marginalized and vulnerable LGBTI peoples and groups in the country.” Sexual health and social support activists in Ethiopia.

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About Mercy

Mercy is a public health and humanitarian practitioner, strategist and community educator and mobilizer, blogger, HIV/AIDS and Social Justice/Human Rights Activist who is courageously advocating for the Dignity, Health Equity and non-discrimination of all Marginalized and Vulnerable Social Groups by fighting the prevalent HIV, the widespread Homophobia and other forms of socio-economic exclusions/injustice in Ethiopia. He is also the co-founder and director of the pioneer; Rainbow-Ethiopia Health and Human Rights Initiative, the one and only LGBTI Health and Human rights organization in Ethiopia Please feel free to Contact him at: rainbow-ethiopia@mail.com Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

Posted on May 16, 2013, in Ethiopian LGBTI Community, LGBTI Human Rights in Ethiopia, MSM and HIV in Ethiopia, Rainbow-Ethiopia Updates and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

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