The Executive Director of Homosexuals Anonymous held two events in Nairobi in 2009 and 2010 ostensibly to spark anti-gay sentiments among the public, KumbuKumbu can now reveal.
Doug McIntyre the Director of Homosexuals Anonymous Fellowship Services (HAFS), who describes himself as ‘ex-gay’, visited Kenya to begin a local chapter of HAFS.
Homosexuals Anonymous is an ex-gay group that practices conversion therapy and describes itself as “a fellowship of men and women, who through their common emotional experience, have chosen to help each other live in freedom from homosexuality.”
It was founded in 1980 by former Seventh-Day Adventist minister Colin Cook. Cook resigned in 1986 following a scandal involving him allegedly having sex with 12 out of the 14 male clients interviewed from 1980 to 1986.
Doug is reported to have spoken to nearly 10,000 students and educators in Kenya in November 2009 and planned to return in March 2010 to conduct more seminars. Further, during these visits, Doug is reported to be ‘educating communities about the “curing” of homosexuality through prayer and therapy.’
Homosexuals Anonymous describes itself as “the oldest and longest-running organisation supporting individuals who wish to leave homosexuality.”
According to the organisation’s October 2009 newsletter:
On November 3, 2009 the Director of HAFS will begin a visit to the beautiful country of Kenya. We have been invited to begin a new work for the HA program and educate the members of a two thousand member church so that they can begin to reclaim the lost youth of the area. An invitation has been extended to teach in 15 local schools and participate in a leadership training program for nearly 200 pastors and church leaders.
Independent media website Alternet reported in March 2010 that US-based anti-gay organisations were working with evangelical Christian groups in Kenya, distributing images of prominent gay and lesbian rights activists in the country with their contact information and “Not Wanted” printed on posters.
The most prominent of these attacks were conducted by PROJECT SEE that published names of alleged gay and lesbian activists. They also dabbled into anti-abortion using the same tactics of posting pictures with the words ‘NOT WANTED’ to alleged pro-abortion doctors in Kenya.
Whereas these events by Homosexual Anonymous were not largely covered, a disturbing pattern seemingly developed. Ex-gay activists appeared in African countries right before spasms of violence and persecution erupt.
In February 2010, for instance, a few months after these events, police and the public in Mombasa began a crackdown on the gay community following allegations of a gay wedding. A similar development happened in Uganda when Exodus International’s board member Don Schmierer was at a Spring 2009 conference in Kampala that helped lead to the notorious Anti-Homosexuality Bill.
Exodus International is described as the world’s largest ex-gay ministry.
However, even before 2009/2010 when the ex-gay movement was in Kenya, the US State Department notes that anti-gay lobbyists had already been formed 2-3 years earlier. In its 2009 report on Kenya, it states, “In 2007 the Council of Imams and Preachers of Kenya and other civic leaders condemned homosexuality and argued against legalising gay marriages. A group in Mombasa created the Muslim Youth Pressure Group to oppose homosexuality in 2007.”