South African Court Says Homosexuals Can Adopt

PRETORIA, South Africa, SEPT. 10, 2002 ( South Africa’s Constitutional Court has ruled that homosexual couples have the right to adopt children, BBC reported.

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The nation’s highest court said today that people in “permanent, same-sex partnerships” could provide children with a stable home and the support and affection necessary.

Under the South African Constitution, discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation is illegal, but provisions of the Child Care Act banned homosexual couples from adopting children.

This makes South Africa the first African country to let same-sex couples legally adopt children, Agence France-Presse reported.

The case to have the relevant sections of the Child Care Act declared unconstitutional was brought by two lesbians.

Elsewhere in Africa, opinions about acceptance of homosexual behavior run differently. In an interview at the recent summit on sustainable development, in Johannesburg, Namibian President Sam Nujoma criticized Western ideas of human rights.

“When you talk about human rights, you include also homosexualism and lesbianism — it’s not our culture, we Africans. And if you try to impose your culture on us Africans, we condemn it, we reject it,” he said.

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