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Copies of play burned during religious demonstration

Two plays about AIDS awareness were among the several items
burned during a religious demonstration against the introduction
of sex education in Kenyan schools. On 31 August 1996, hundreds
of Catholic youth, led by Catholic Church Cardinal Maurice
Otunga, marched through the streets of Nairobi. The marchers
ended up at Uhuru Park, where the protest culminated in the
burning of heaps of condoms and AIDS awareness literature
including the short play "Life, Love and Aids" along with its
Kiswahili translation, "Maisha, Mapenzi na Ukimwi"; and the
pamphlet "Peter and Anne Discuss Aids with Auntie Mary". The
play, intended for primary school children, was said to be
offensive to Catholics.

This is the second time that Cardinal Otunga has destroyed
contraceptives and sex education material in public. In August
1995, the then Imam of Jamia Mosque joined Cardinal Otunga in
burning a booklet on sex education prepared by the Kenya Scout

Recommended Action

Send appeals to authorities:
  • pointing out that the burning of copies of "Life, Love and Aids"
    and other literature is a direct contravention of Article 19 of
    the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights which
    stipulates that everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and

    Appeals To

    Cardinal Maurice Otunga
    P.O. Box 14231
    Nairobi, Kenya
    Tel: +254 02 441919

    Please copy appeals to the originator if possible.

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