It seems the move by the former Majority leader Aden Duale to criminalize pornography has not gone well with a section of Kenyans who have accused him of trying to legislate lifestyle.
The bill which has so far been backed by the Central Organization of Trade Unions (COTU) seeks to criminalize possession or publishing of pornographic content with those sharing the same risking a fine of 20 million shillings or 25 year jail term or both.
While urging Kenyans to support the bill, COTU Secretary General Francis Atwoli wrote: “The proposed law, as captured by our local dailies, seeks to amend the Computer Misuse and Cybercrimes Act to introduce harsh penalties for any violation of the same.”
“Foremost, it must be noted that this is an issue of public health concern and not freedom of speech and or access to information as provided in the Bill of Rights in the 2010 Constitution of Kenya because the production and promotion of pornographic materials have an impact on not just the social well-being of the youth, workers and society at large but also sexual health.” Added part of his statement.
However, Kenyans took to their social media handles to express their disappointment on the bill, terming it dictatorial in nature.
To sample just but a few, this is how Kenyans reacted to Aden Duale’s bill to criminalize pornography:
“Watching pornography or sharing it privately is like prostitution or homosexuality … These are personal moral choices that don’t need legislation …. Aden Duale should focus on Terrorism & Corruption: Kenya’s twin problems that undermine our economy & sovereignty.” Tweeted one Kenyan by the name Donald Kipkorir .
“Aden Duale is proposing a ksh 5M fine for publishing terrorism materials and a ksh 20M fine for sharing/downloading pornographic materials. According to him, it’s better to kill than to watch porn. That man is seriously becoming stupid.” Added another tweeter user.
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Another Tweeter user called Gabriel Oguda also wrote: “Aden Duale is introducing a Bill in Parliament that will see anyone who downloads, distributes or circulates pornographic material be fined Sh20 million or 20 years in jail. COVID millionaires are chewing public funds like Big-G, but it’s pornography taking blame for it.”