Funmi Iyanda says “yes” to gay rights, and she is speaking up on the matter.
The TV host made the cover of Guardian Life, where she spoke strongly about gay rights, respect for the LGBT community and her viral interview with popular gay activist Bisi Alimi that cost her losing her job and affected her career at that time.
“When I did that interview I did not know how much punishment I would get,” the Funmi recalled. “I was more concerned for him than myself. I kept asking, ‘Are you sure you want to do this?’ And he said, ‘I’m sure.’ As we were doing the interview on live TV I could hear the panic and I knew at that moment; that we were in trouble. I support gay rights. Sexuality is your business and it is not against our culture.”
The entertainment personality continued, “I remember a white girl who commented on the video interview with Bisi. She claimed I wasn’t even supporting him. I’m Nigerian: I knew the interview would be dangerous so I had to be extremely careful about how I worded what I said. Then here comes this young white girl from a country which on the surface of it seem to be in acceptance of LGBT rights and prefers that support worded in certain lingo. She superimposes those expectations on me, in a Nigeria of a time where even after the interview ended, I was punished severely in ways I will not talk about, even now, until I am ready. It’s ridiculous!”
Funmi Iyanda concluded, “In a world where a performance of progress has become the fad, there is a militancy about how to be progressive even to people like me who’s lived life, actions and speech speak eloquently about an abiding love for others and agitation for freedom and equity for all human beings.”