Namibia: Landmark test for stance against gay marriage

Two couples challenging the government’s refusal to recognise same-sex marriages concluded outside Namibia are now waiting for three judges to announce their decision following a combined hearing of their cases in the Windhoek High Court yesterday. Judges Hannelie Prinsloo, Orben Sibeya and Esi Schimming-Chase reserved their judgement after hearing oral arguments on two cases in which the government is being sued to have same-sex marriages concluded in other countries recognised in Namibia. Prinsloo postponed the delivery of the court’s judgement to 20 January next year, but added that the decision could be announced before then if it is available earlier. In both matters, the court is being asked to declare that the marriage between a Namibian citizen and a non-Namibian spouse of the same sex is recognised in Namibia – something that the Ministry of Home Affairs, Immigration, Safety and Security has so far refused to do.