Source: Rodnae Productions Pexel
Africa is known to be the most intolerable continent for LGBTQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer) people. A United Nations report even recorded that out of the 54 African states, only 22 have legalized same-sex activities, and only about 6 -7 have LGBTQ discrimination protections, with South Africa topping the list in both. Although these 22 countries have legalized same-sex activities, not all twenty-two (22) countries tolerate or are LGBTQ-friendly at a maximum level. Below, we will highlight the ten most LGBTQ-friendly countries in Africa.
South Africa is topping this list because it was the first African country and the fifth country ever to legalize same-sex marriage in 2006. Following this development, South Africa became the 1st African state to support the LGBTQ community, thus, making it the most LGBTQ-friendly country in Africa.
According to interviews and investigations by an organization called Afrobarometer, LGBTQ tolerance in Africa is highest in South Africa, followed by Namibia and Mozambique. In Namibia, transgender is mostly tolerated, and same-sex activities between consenting adults in private are common.
Mozambique is another friendly LGBTQ friendly country currently. In Mozambique, its government has partially tolerated same-sex activities since 2011, and they were finally made legal in 2015. In Mozambique, LGBTQ discrimination protections in employment are also available to LGBTQ persons who may decide to reside and work in the country, making Mozambique a super LGBTQ-friendly country.
Same-sex activities were made legal in Botswana in 2019. It’s making this list because it has the most protection for LGBTQ people than any other African country: it has discrimination protections in sexual orientation and also passed a bill into its law-making changing gender or gender transition a constitutional right.
5. THE REPUBLIC OF SEYCHELLES
Seychelles decriminalized same-sex activities in 2016. There are also LGBTQ discrimination protections in employment in Seychelles, making it one of the few African countries to have such protection for LGBTQ people after Mozambique. It also makes Seychelles another super LGBTQ-friendly country.
6. CAPE VERDE
Same-sex activities for both men and women were made legal in Cape Verde in 2004. Cape Verde is one of the few African countries with discrimination protections for LGBTQ people. It has been reported that Cape Verde is one of the most tolerant countries in Africa towards gay and lesbians.
7. THE REPUBLIC OF BENIN
In The Republic of Benin, there is currently no law in the republic of Benin condemning LGBTQ acts. In Benin, same-sex sexual acts are legal for both men and women between consenting adults in private.
In Lesotho, homosexuality was made legal and completely decriminalized in 2010. However, it is still seen as abominable by many citizens. With homosexuality legal, Lesotho can be viewed as an LGBTQ-friendly country. While that’s the case, LGBTQ communities are tolerated at a moderate level in the country.
Madagascar is one country that also tolerates LGBTQ people. However, it is only legal among consenting persons at least 21 years old and above. The only blemish is that LGBTQ people do not have discrimination protections in Madagascar.
In Angola, same-sex activity was legalized in 2021, making it one of the most recent countries to legalize same-sex activities. UN (United Nations) reports that people in Angola tolerate LGBTQ people the most in Africa. Angola also has discrimination protection in sexual orientation. Following these, Angola can be viewed as an LGBTQ-friendly country.
Despite these legalizations and discrimination protection measures for LGBTQ people in these African countries, LGBTQ people still face discrimination. Hate speech, stigmatization, and inequality are at a maximum level in Africa. Although many Africans tolerate different sexual orientations, many still see it as immoral and an abomination.
At any rate, if you are gay, lesbian, transgender, bisexual, or queer in these mentioned countries in Africa, you can rest assured of more people tolerating your choice of sexuality.