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Kenyan bars reportedly turning away queer patrons

BY NATASHA BARSOTTI – Reports coming out of major Kenyan cities like Nairobi, Mombasa and Nakuru say several bars and clubs are enforcing a no-entry rule on men found to be too effeminate and women who are too masculine or butch, according to Identity Kenya, an LGBTI and sex-work community group.

One Nairobi club, Tacos, considered the "unofficial official gay bar" in that city, barred several gay patrons, the bouncers saying they were instructed not to let them in because of their "behaviour," Identity Kenya reports. The club's owner reportedly decided to forbid entry because two men were discovered fondling each other in the men's room. But Tacos has been known to throw out gay patrons in the past.

In Nakuru, Club Taidy is also clamping down on gay patrons, especially lesbians, after two women were thrown out for "sexual dancing." Likewise, Mombasa's Club California has been unwelcoming to gays, particularly since anti-gay riots in 2009. 

In an interview with Gay Star News, activist Denis Nizoka said, "There are reported cases of bar security beating up, assaulting patrons who display feminine or butch characteristics." Nizoka said gay patrons should avoid such places to show that pink power is a financial force to be reckoned with and that gays can spend their money elsewhere.

Recently, it was revealed that a crime cartel was using dating sites and Facebook to arrange meetings with closeted Kenyans whom they blackmailed, forcing them to hand over money, PIN numbers and bank cards, according to Gaydar, ManJam and GayRomeo were among the sites used to make the hookups.


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