After more than 34,000 All Out members petitioned the Australian Football League (AFL) to cut ties with the Royal Brunei Airline, the AFL announced today it was working to wind up the agreement “possibly within days, at most within a few weeks” as reported by ABC Australia.
In just few days, over 1,300 tweets were sent to the AFL Twitter account demanding the sponsorship be dropped.
“We applaud the Australian Football League (AFL) for this courageous move,” said Andre Banks, All Out’s Co-founder and Executive Director. “This is a game changer in the push against Brunei’s proposal to mandate inhuman punishments like stoning, whipping and amputation for being gay and other offences. The AFL has taken a strong stand against homophobia today that shows the Sultan of Brunei that killing people because of who they are is not only wrong – it’s very bad for business.”
This sponsorship between AFL Europe, the governing body for the AFL in Europe, and the Royal Brunei Airline was the “the organisation’s biggest ever sponsorship deal” according to AFL Europe.
A new strict sharia penal code, imposed by Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah introduced a series of harsh provisions that violate basic human rights, including death penalty for gay and lesbian citizens, once the legislation is fully applied in 2015.
All Out members all over the world have gotten key corporations and sports associations to speak out in response to anti-gay laws. During the Olympics in Russia, we helped raise a huge outcry that got some National Olympic Sponsors to speak out against Russia’s anti-gay law. And, recently we got Orange to pull ads from a tabloid that outed lesbian, gay, bi and trans people when the Ugandan anti-gay law passed.