KFCB bans ‘I am Samuel’ film for advocating same-sex marriage

By Mourice Seretta 

The Kenya Film and Classification Board (KFCB) has banned a film titled ‘I am Samuel’ saying that it deliberately promotes same-sex marriage as an acceptable way of life.

Addressing the media on Thursday, KFCB acting Chief Executive Officer Christopher Wambua noted that by deliberately advocating same-sex marriage in Kenya, the film blatantly violates Article 165 of the Penal Code that outlaws homosexuality as well as the provisions of the Films and Stage Plays Act Cap 222 of the laws of Kenya.

Wambua further states that the film also tries to influence the viewer into believing that the older generation that was once against LGBTQ+ is slowly buying into the practice and accepting same-sex marriage as a normal way of life.

‘In the course of examining a film titled ‘I am Samuel, which was submitted to the Board for classification, the Board noted a clear and deliberate attempt by the producer, to promote same-sex marriage as an acceptable way of life.

This attempt is evident through the repeated confessions by the gay couple that what they feel for each other is normal and should be embraced as a way of life, as well as the characters’ body language, including scenes of kissing of two male lovers. The documentary ultimately features marriage of two men, and concludes with the dedication of the film to the gay community,’ Wambua outlined.

The acting CEO said the Film is therefore an affront to Article 45 of the Kenyan constitution, which recognises the family as the basic unit of society and defines marriage as between two persons of the opposite gender.

‘Moreover, our laws and culture re-affirm the institute of family as sacrosanct. On this score, any film or broadcast content appearing to legalize, advocate, normalize or glorify the act contravenes the laws or our land. The documentary is, therefore, unacceptable and an affront to our culture and identity.’ he said.

On matters religion, Wambua said the production is demeaning of Christianity as two gay men in the film purport to conduct a religious marriage invoking the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. On the basis of religion as a classifiable element, the Board found the documentary not only blasphemous but also an attempt to use religion to advocate same sex marriage.

‘On account of the afore-cited reasons, on this 23rd day of September 2021, the Board hereby pronounces the 52-minute gay-themed film titled ‘I am Samuel’ as RESTRICTED. For the avoidance of doubt, RESTRICTED in this case means that it is prohibited from exhibition, distribution, possession or broadcasting within the Republic of Kenya,’ Wambua declared.

He warned some producers who want to promote gay-themed content that propagates same sex marriage contrary to cultural beliefs and norms saying the Board will not allow such productions to be either broadcast or exhibited within Kenya as laws do not countenance homosexuality or same-sex marriage.

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