Eric Gitari v NGO Board & 4 others [2015] – Case Summary

This case summary lays out how the High Court of Kenya at Nairobi found in 2015 that the failure by a government agency to register a LGBT rights NGO, on the basis that homosexuality is criminalised in the East African country, is unconstitutional.

In April 2015, the High Court of Kenya at Nairobi ruled in favour of the applicant in Eric Gitari v NGO Board & 4 others, finding that the applicant’s LGBT NGO must be allowed to be registered by the Kenya Non-Governmental Organisations Coordination Board after being denied registration. The defendant then appealed the decision to the Court of Appeal, and finally to the Supreme Court in what has been a 10-year legal battle. This Case Summary summarises the 2015 court decision.

The Court declared that ”the respondents have contravened the provisions of Articles 36 of the constitution in failing to accord just and fair treatment to gay and lesbian persons living in Kenya seeking registration of an association of their choice.” The three-judge bench also stated that ”the petitioner is entitled to exercise his constitutionally guaranteed freedom to associate by being able to form an association.”