Thursday, September 14
12:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m. EDT
National Endowment for Democracy
1025 F Street NW, Suite 800
Washington, DC 20004
Brian Pellot, Director of Global Strategy, Religion News Service and Religion News Foundation; Founding Director, Taboom
Barigye Ambrose, Uganda-based human rights activist and field director and reporter for Kuchu Times Media Group
Martha Mukaiwa, Columnist at The Namibian, based in Windhoek
Eric Robinson, Associate Director for Africa programs, National Endowment for Democracy
Selly Thiam, Founder and Executive Director, None on Record, based in Kenya
Wana Udobang, Nigeria-based journalist, poet, and filmmaker
In Sub-Saharan Africa, as in much of the world, reporting on sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression can be particularly difficult. Cultural taboos, religious convictions, entrenched stereotypes, social hostilities, legal prohibitions, and editorial censorship often distort coverage of these sensitive topics. This panel brings together journalists and activists from four African nations to discuss challenges in covering religion and LGBTQI+ issues in their communities. How can they overcome these obstacles in order to contribute to a more tolerant, pluralistic media narrative?
The panelists draw from a recent workshop hosted by Taboom Media and Religion News Foundation (RNF). The initiative aims to amplify the voices of LGBTQI+ advocates and communities across Sub-Saharan Africa, offering a counter-narrative to extremist voices in the region while raising awareness of the challenges facing these communities and the journalists who try to cover them.