A Russian politician has come out in support of a rapper Vasily Vakulenko’s call to make Khabib Nurmagomedov Minister of Culture in Dagestan due to the fighter’s conservative views.
State Duma deputy Vitaly Milonov revealed that he would vote for Nurmagomedov to have a key role in Dagestan’s ministry of culture because the former UFC champion would make sure to limit “gayness” on television.
“I don’t know what kind of Minister of Culture of Dagestan Khabib can turn out to be, but for example, he can be included in the Ministry of Culture’s commissioned experts so that he does not allow any kind of gayness on the screens,” Milonov said. “Although there are no problems with culture in Dagestan—at least in the cinema they do not show nasty films with a man in the role of a fairy.
“Khabib will definitely not have to explain why he shouldn’t show the transgender Cinderella,” Milonov added in his bizarre, homophobic rant.
While Nurmagomedov does not appear to have publicly shared his stance on homosexuality, the former UFC champion was until recently affiliated Chechnya’s dictator, Ramzan Kadyrov – the murderous tyrant known for oppressing his people and pursuing anti-gay purges among Chechnya’s LGBTQ+ community.
Nurmagomedov has also been criticized for using his influence as one of the world’s most popular Muslim athletes to further his ultra-conservative worldview, including to campaign against cultural events that took place in his native Dagestan. In 2018, he suggested closing all nightclubs in his native republic and criticized a rap concert that took place in Makhackala, Dagestan, which resulted in rapper Egor Kreed canceling his performances in the conservative republic after being threatened with rape.
During his rant, Milonov defended Nurmagomedov’s handling of the Kreed incident and referred to the rapper’s music as “absolute ugliness.”
In 2018, Nurmagomedov was reportedly offered a position as an assistant to Vladimir Vasilyev, the Head of the Republic of Dagestan. The offer was discussed when Nurmagomedov met with the Head of Dagestan to receive the highest award in his native republic, the Order of Merit for the Republic of Dagestan. Despite the offer, Nurmagomedov remains non-committal about a political career following his retirement.
“I am 31, and I have never been in charge of anything,” Nurmagomedov said ahead of his final fight in 2020. “I have no experience in politics to lead anything.”