Willis Chimano, one of the stars of Sauti Sol, the afro-pop Kenyan band, has come out as gay.

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Chimano spoke about his sexual orientation in an interview with The Standard, a local publication, ending years of speculation on his membership to the LGBT+ community.

The 34-year-old singer said being gay is the true representation of who he is.

“It is the first time I am expressing myself in a song. You really get to know who Chimano is and that is a heavy crown to carry,” he said while promoting ‘Friday Feeling’, his latest pop single.

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“It is just a representation of the underground ballroom culture within the queer community… which I am part of”.

 

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A post shared by WILLIS AUSTIN CHIMANO 🌈🌈🌈 (@iamchimano)

Chimano also advised his fans to be themselves and do what makes them happy.

Sauti Sol is one of the biggest male bands in Africa. The group won the 2016 MTV Africa Music Awards among many others.

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Just like in Nigeria, gay sex is punishable by up to 14 years in prison in Kenya.

The African nation does not recognise any relationship between persons of the same sex. Same-sex marriage is also banned under the Kenyan constitution since 2010.

Chimano is, however, said to have been hailed in Kenya for revealing his sexuality to the public.

“Young people are saluting him and are seeing him as an icon who comes out to celebrate his life and his sexuality. It’s a good thing, it shows our diversity as a country,” Kevin Mwachiro, the gay activist, told the BBC.

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