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Batswana tolerant of gays, Afrobarometer says

STAFF WRITER
Gaborone Pride. Batswana tolerant of gays PIC. THALEFANG CHARLES
More than half of Batswana would object to working or worshipping with someone who is in a same-sex relationship, but such intolerance is significantly less pronounced among younger and more educated citizens and appears to be declining, according to a new Afrobarometer survey.

Botswana made international headlines last year when its High Court struck down a colonial-era law that criminalised same sex relations. According to the key findings of the survey, a slim majority of Batswana, that is 52 percent, say they would mind having someone in a same-sex relationship as a co-worker, a supervisor or a member of their religious community (56 percent). 

“Similarly, half (51 percent) of the respondents say they would ‘somewhat’ or ‘strongly’ dislike having a neighbour who is in a same sex relationship. But nearly as

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many (48%) say they would like it or would not care - a view that has gained 10 percent points since the previous survey in 2017. Across 34 African countries surveyed in 2016/2018, only 20% of respondents expressed such tolerance,” Afrobarometer says.

Last it says tolerance of same-sex relationships is in the majority view among young respondents; 56% of those aged 18-35 say would not mind working with someone in a same-sex relationship. A majority of urban residents (57%) and respondents with post-secondary education (71%) agree.



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