David Kuria, First Openly Gay Candidate, Quits Uganda Senate Race

outr run documentary david kuriaDavid Kuria, the first openly gay candidate for the Ugandan Senate, has announced he cannot not finish the senate race because of lack of funds to cover campaigning and personal security.

Throughout his run for a seat in Kiambu, near the capital of Nairobi, Kuria faced numerous death threats. One cabinet minister warned of open revolt if he was elected.

Kuria, one of the subjects of the documentary Out Run, was disheartened about having having to withdraw, telling the Guardian:

“I had seen changes in the way our people in the villages view gay people. For many people, gay people and gay rights are perceived though mediated interpretation of politicians and religious leaders. For the first time it was possible to talk with the people, answer their questions as well as point out the nexus areas of different forms of marginalisation, including poverty and other challenges that affect them, too.”

Kuria made his announcement in late November, but promises to stay active in the struggle for LGBT equality. Another run for office, though, isn’t likely: “In the struggle for rights, some individuals have to make sacrifices that can not be merely compensated by the realisation of these rights,” he says. “I just think I was not the right person for this.”