Bolu Okupe, son of former presidential aide, Dr Doyin Okupe, speaks to AFEEZ HANAFI on his sexual orientation as a gay and his father’s remarks
Your dad, in two separate Facebook posts, expressed strong belief that you would reconsider your sexual orientation as a gay someday. What is your view on this?
Sexual orientation is not something that one can “reconsider”. This is the way I am and it is the way I have always been and will always be. I and many others in the LGBTQ (Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer) community were born the way we are, many may not understand this but stop and think for a second, why would we intentionally choose this lifestyle when we know that we will be ridiculed and shamed by society? I do hope that one day we can, as Nigerians and Africans, get to the point where we love and accept each other regardless of things such as sexual orientation.
Your father equally said your sexual status is anti-Christ. How do you feel about it?
I will just say that I love and appreciate every one of my family members, my father inclusive, because if not for him, I definitely would not be able to live the life that I currently live. So, I will never utter anything disrespectful (to him) on any platform. With regard to homosexuality being anti-Christ, this is not incorrect, as many have pointed out to me. It is clearly forbidden in the Bible; however, I would like to also mention that there are a lot of things that are also forbidden in the Bible that many Christians partake in. So, it confuses me why people of the Christian religion feel like they can pick and choose what to be morally superior about.
Why did you choose to be gay?
I did not choose to be gay. No one chooses their sexual orientation. The same way people do not choose to be straight, you just know.
At what point did it occur to you that you’re one?
From the age of 10 or 11 I knew I was different, and if you speak to more people in the LGBTQ community they will tell you the same thing, it starts around pre-puberty years. We would progress more as a society if we spoke more to each other and judged less.