Addressing the Real Challenges of Transgender Kenyans
By: Audrey Mbugua
A couple of weeks ago, I was privileged to attend the Women Steering Innovative Leadership in Africa Conference in Lilongwe – the capital city of Malawi. It was a lofty idea by the Government of Malawi and development partners like the Urgent Action Fund (UAF) whereby women from various social justice struggles had an interactive platform and gained a deeper understanding of what each was doing to excise patriarchy and other oppressive systems from the DNA of African societies.
During one of our lunch breaks, I shared a table with a consultant from one of our neighboring countries and she revealed to me and others that her employer –a donor agency based in America- was funding the LGBTI movement in Ethiopia. The acronym LGBTI stands for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender/Transsexual and Intersex. Lesbian and Gay refers to women who date other women and gay stands for men who dates other men respectively. Bisexual describes people who are attracted to men and women. Transsexual/transgender describes people with gender identity disorder/gender dysphoria and undergoing medical change of gender (Gender Reassignment)