In this episode Romina Achatz is in conversation with LGBTIQ+ rights and wellbeing activist Matthew Blaise. They founded The Oasis Project, a Nigeria-based registered non-profit organization working to promote positive representation of queer people. They educate, uphold, empower and promote the rights and humanity of all Nigerians. In Nigeria minorities, particularly the LGBTIQ+ community, are in need of safe spaces. The Oasis Project provides a place to connect, engage and support, celebrate the vibrancy and growth of the LGBTIQ+ community and journey together towards acceptance.
Besides the Oasis Project and the LGBTIQ+ community in Nigeria, Matthew Blaise talks about Queer Practices in Ancient Africa that make Queerness more African than Queerphobia. They talk about pre- colonial times in which gender as a fixed and binary idea wasn’t materialized yet. For example, Matthew talks about Same Sex eroticism for Spiritual Benefits (for example practices in Ndebele und Shona tribe in Zimbabwe, Nupe in Nigeria, Azande in Sudan and Congo, Tutsi in Rwanda and Burund), Female Husbandary, Crossdressing, Male Daughters (common amongst the Igbo of Nigeria), Affairs of the „Mudoko Dako“ (among the Lange people in Northern Uganda, Effeminate males known as Mudoko Dako were treated as women and could marry men), Androgynous, Zvibanda, Chibados, Quintanas, Gangas and Kibambaa (male diviners) in Angola and Namibia and many more.
Matthew Blaise won many awards for their dedicated activism for social justice: The Future award Africa Nominee for Leading Conversations, TIERS SOGIESC Activist of 2020 Nativeson Global Change Maker 2020, Endsars Queer Organizer, SOGIESC Rights Activist of the year 2020.
Music by Whitescape (Helly Vega)