In the wake of two male lions in Kenya’s Masai Mara Park having a homosexual encounter, a government official has blamed gay men visiting the national park for shaping the animals’ behaviour, according to MailOnline.
Dr Ezekiel Mutua, who is responsible for TV and film censorship in Kenya, has demanded that the two lions in question be caught and kept in isolation until scientists can “determine how they acquired homosexual behaviour”.
Despite the fact that homosexuality among lions has been observed for decades, Dr Mutua is convinced that the lions have either spotted gay men having intercourse in front of them or are possessed by demons.
In his quest to find a alternative explanation for what is a well-documented natural occurrence, Dr Mutua also called for an investigation into whether the two lions – despite their grand manes – were really male.
Gay sex causes earthquakes, says Muslim cleric
‘These animals need counselling, because probably they have been influenced by gays who have gone to the national parks and behaved badly,” Dr Mutua told Nairobi News.
Dr Mutua is the chief executive of the Kenya Film Classification Board (KFCB), and in defence of his own work, he told the paper that as the animals could not have seen gay sex on film, they must have witnessed it in the Masai Mara.
‘They must have copied it from somewhere or it is demonic. Because these animals do not watch movies,” he added.
He also demanded confirmation of the genders of the lions, saying “we should not jump to conclusions that the lions were both male”.
Gay and transgender people are severely discriminated against in Kenya, and any same-sex sexual activity is illegal and punishable by up to 14 years in prison.
The images which so upset Dr Mutua were taken by London-based photographer Paul Goldstein during a trip to the Masai Mara.
Goldstein said he first observed the two lions standing side-by-side, before one lay down and was gently mounted by the other. At one point one lion’s head was resting on the other’s.
“Sometimes you just see something that takes your breath away. I was guiding in the Masai Mara recently and we saw two impressive alpha males in perfect light,” said Goldstein, a guide for Exodus Travels.
“After a while they stood together, in perfect symmetry. What then happened was remarkable,” he added. I have heard of this happening in Botswana but with nothing like this vigour, and indeed at various zoos and safari parks, but incarcerated animals will do strange things, who can blame them.”
Goldstein said this, however, was astonishing. “I normally loathe any sort of humanising with animals and our documentary channels are full of it, but this was not only surprising but it was impossible not to smile,” he remarked.
“When lions mate it normally last a few seconds, these two were at it for over a minute and the obvious affection afterwards was very evident, as opposed to the violent withdrawal when male and female mate.”
The photographer noted that as the lion dismounted, the other did not back off as was normal after mating. “He crept round to the other male’s muzzle, for a nuzzle and threw a conspiratorial wink his way.”