The 27th -28th was the day of arrival in JHB at the Stay City hotel. We had no idea of what was going to happen of the 29th but we heard and we knew that the day was titled “our day “and everybody was excited about it. We had supper together on the 28th and at 19:00 pm we had our meeting where we were all briefed with the arrangements of the big day. I was excited to see many activists as it is my dream to work with them more often. There were all sorts of excitement on that night and peace; one felt like heaven is close by.

At 08:00 in the morning the bus was ready to transport us from the Stay City hotel to Constitutional Hill where the main event was hosted. At the gate we were called according to the provinces we signed the register, got t-shirts and bag with informational pamphlets. Inside the tent breakfast was served and everybody was dressed in a smart way waiting for the minister to tell us why we were there. Whilst waiting the struggle songs were sang and everybody was excited dancing next to the stage.

The program started exactly at 11:00 am as it was planned. The director of the program was Ms. Thoko Mpumlwana, among us were Deputy Chairperson of the Commission of Gender Equality, Deputy Minister of Justice and Constitutional Development Mr. J. Jeffery, Director General of the Department of Justice and Constitutional Development Ms. N. Sindane, Advocate Lawrence Mushwana who is the chairperson  of the South African Human Rights Commission, Ms. Jacqueline Nzoyihera, Representative of the Office of UN High Commission for Human Rights Southern Africa,  Ambassadors and High Commissioners representing Foreign Missions  in South Africa, Members of the National Task Team (TTN), the Representatives of Civil Organizations representing all 9 Provinces.

We started off by the National Anthem and all went well.  The Premier of Gauteng did the welcoming by touching the important facts of death rates they have experienced in Gauteng. As they mentioned few of those who left Duduzile Zozo was also mentioned and the audience was sad but she managed to rap it up in nice words that said “ you are all welcome and we are one”.

The interesting thing is that among us were the parents of priests. We are grateful of having parents like Ms Charlotte Nkosi from Mpumalanga who highlighted the difficulties that they have as LGBTI parents. I always thought that we are the only people who are discriminated against but the fact is our parents too are getting discriminated. Mam’ Nkosi  said “ one gets to be discriminated by the society because she has a lesbian child, I cannot be part of the local preparations event or have a say in Woman’s gatherings because my child is a lesbian” the crowd went “mmmm” as the words went straight to the heart. She continued to say that she is “proudly an LGBTI member” we were touched and my gay friend (kanya) was so teary, I said to myself “wow that is so girly”, but I understand why he cried. We still have problems in our homes!!

The audience was also excited by the speech that “MC” (Nonhlanhla Mkhize) made especially when she said “we are now not just in relationships, not sex partners, not forced to write father or mother in Home Affairs rather Parent 1 and Parent 2, not accused of being victims of child abuse when we want kids but we are free we are now allowed to be Married” how nice and sweet!

Finally the speech of the Minister.

“ Programme Director, Ms Thoko Mpumlwana, Deputy Chairperson of the Commission for Gender Equality
Deputy Minister of Justice and Constitutional Development, Mr J Jeffery, MP
Director-General of the Department of Justice and Constitutional Development, Ms N Sindane
Adv Lawrence Mushwana, Chairperson of the South African Human Rights Commission
Ms Jacqueline Nzoyihera, Representative of the Office of the UN High Commission for Human Rights Southern Africa
Ambassadors and High Commissioners representing Foreign Missions in South Africa
Members of the LGBTI National Task Team
Representatives of Civil Society Organizations representing the 9 Provinces
Distinguished Guests

It gives me great pleasure to be here today as we launch our national LGBTI program; amidst a distinguished audience of Excellences’ and Representatives of Foreign Missions stationed here in South Africa, Heads of Chapter 9 institutions, representatives of international organizations and indeed human rights activists from all walks of life.  We salute you in particular, for your tireless efforts in ensuring the protection of human dignity, equality and freedom for one and all!

This launch takes place during the Freedom month, shortly after we celebrated National Freedom Day and in so doing we also commemorated the 20th anniversary of our vibrant democracy.  Twenty years ago South Africa was a very different place.  As we proudly celebrate our country’s twentieth year of freedom, we are reminded of the toil and sufferings of our people and the constant pursuit of the freedom struggle for a better life for all the people of South Africa.

The Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, 1996 (the Constitution), recognizes the injustices of the past and Honours those who suffered for justice and freedom in our land.  The Constitution, informed by the key principles outlined in the Freedom Charter, the African Claims document and all other historic documents of the African National Congress, remains the single most important document guiding our development policies, legislation and programs aimed at addressing the triple challenges of poverty, inequality and unemployment. We are proud as the South African Nation for the sweeping constitutional and human rights developments that came as a result of the advent of democracy.

Our Constitution lays the basis for the construction of a democratic, non-racial, non-sexist, united and prosperous society based on justice, equality, the rule of law and the inalienable human rights of all.

Program Director
The equality clause in our Constitution remains one of the most progressive constitutional provisions in the world.  We say this with pride because South Africa was the first country in the world to legally prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation. We have a progressive legislative framework. We have legislated against discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation in the workplace.  In 1999, we introduced the Domestic Violence Act that classifies a same-sex relationship as a ‘domestic relationship’, in other words, thus qualifying to receive legal protection in terms of this Act. The Promotion of Equality and Prevention of Unfair Discrimination Act of 2000 and the introduction of Equality Courts came about in an attempt to give effect to the text and spirit of the Constitution, in particular the promotion of equal enjoyment of all rights and freedoms by every person. We have legalized same-sex marriages and both joint and step adoption by same-sex couples. In South Africa, intersex persons are permitted through the Alteration of Sex Description and Sex Act of 2003 to undergo a sex change.

Notwithstanding the comprehensive constitutional and legal framework and protection for LGBTI persons, we have sadly witnessed acts of discrimination and violent attacks being perpetrated against LGBTI persons.  Discrimination, based on anyone of the prohibited grounds outlined in Section 9 of the Constitution, which has the purpose or effect of nullifying or impairing the recognition, enjoyment or exercise, on an equal footing, of human rights and fundamental freedoms will simply not be tolerated.  The justice system of South Africa will respond harshly to perpetrators of such discriminatory behavior.

Program Director,
We received a number of petitions from organizations worldwide calling upon the South African Government to deal with the cases of violence being perpetrated against LGBTI persons.  In submitting its National Report to the Universal Periodic Mechanism of the United Nations Human Rights Council in 2012, South Africa was commended by UN Member States for its commitment to human rights and improving the lives of its citizens, the delivery of basic services such as housing, health and education as well as South Africa’s leading role in the United National Human Rights Council, especially regarding the rights of Gay, Lesbian, Bi-sexual, Transgender, Intersex (LGBTI) persons.  Equally so, South Africa was also urged to develop urgent measures to deal with violence against LGBTI persons.

We are pleased to note that the National Task Team has heeded this call by working extremely hard in the past year to develop a National Intervention Strategy on Gender and Sexual Orientation based Violence. Over the past year officials from relevant government departments Justice and Constitutional Development, South African Police Service, National Prosecuting Authority, Social Development, Correctional Services, Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs, Women, Children and People with Disabilities and GCIS, Chapter 9 institutions and civil society organizations, have developed the following documents:

  • The Terms of Reference of the National Task Team;
  • The Terms of Reference of the Rapid Response Team;
  • The National Intervention Strategy; and
  • An information pamphlet on Frequently Asked Questions regarding LGBTI persons;

 

Program Director 
I will briefly touch on each of these documents:

On the Terms of Reference of the National Task Team, upon establishing the National Task Team to develop a National Intervention Strategy on LGBTI Rights in 2011, a Working Group was established and mandated to revise the Terms of Reference.  Of particular concern and importance to the participating institutions was the need to ensure proper representivity. Having addressed this particular issue through comprehensive civil society alliance building workshops held with all the 9 Provinces in this past year, we are pleased to note that the composition of the National Task Team, amongst others, will now also comprise of two provincial representatives representing the LGBTI sector in all the Provinces.

The Terms of Reference of the National Task Team further deal with its purpose which is to develop a National Intervention Strategy to address gender- and sexual orientation-based violence against LGBTI persons, especially in the criminal justice system. The objectives as outlined in the Terms of Reference, amongst others, are to:

 

 

  • Develop an Intersectoral Implementation Plan for the Strategy, and this will flow from the Strategy;
  • Strengthen governments’ ability to respond to LGBTI needs and specific vulnerability and strengthen the capacity of CSOs to deliver related services;
  • Improve linkages with other government departments;
  • Improve the management of cases by relevant role players in the justice system including the South African Police Service, the National Prosecuting Authority, the Department of Social Development, the Department of Health and the Department of Correctional Services; and
  • Implement, coordinate, monitor and evaluate the National Intervention Strategy and other related objectives.

 

Program Director,
On the Terms of Reference of the Rapid Response Team, we wish to inform this august audience that a  Rapid Response Team was established comprising the Department of Justice and Constitutional Development, National Prosecuting Authority, South African Police Service and representatives from civil society organizations.

The purpose of the Rapid Response Team is to urgently attend to the pending and reported cases in the criminal justice system where hate crimes have been committed against LGBTI persons.

The terms of Reference deal with the mandate of the Rapid Response Team and outline the roles and responsibilities of the various role players as well as provide a working definition of a hate crime given that we do not have specifically designated legislation on hate crimes as yet.

Program Director, 
The Rapid Response Team is fully operational and we are pleased to note that there is progress being made in speeding up cases in the criminal justice system.  Of the cases received from civil society organizations we can report on the following:

Fourteen (14) cases have been finalized, 5 of which were with imprisonment sentences of 22 years; 10 years; 15 years; 15 years and 20 years, respectively.  Nineteen (19) cases are pending within the criminal justice system.  Eight (8) cases cannot be traced due to incomplete or incorrect information submitted by the organizations involved.  We therefore urge CSO’s to heed the call to provide the team with correct and accurate information for speedy resolution of such matters.

Regarding the undetected cases and cases withdrawn, the South African Police Service will be recalling the dockets in these cases to evaluate the contents thereof with the assistance of team members in the Rapid Response Team.  The purpose thereof will be to ensure that all matters in the docket have been addressed correctly, if not, we will refer it back to the investigating officers concerned for further investigation.

On the National Intervention Strategy, following extensive consultations, we are pleased to present to you the Strategy.  The strategy includes work to be undertaken in three key areas: developing prevention programs to address violence and discrimination perpetrated on the grounds of sexual orientation and gender identity; improving the response of the criminal justice system in addressing such violence and discrimination; and strengthening the capacity of state and civil society institutions and systems to address and prevent such violence and discrimination.

Program Director,
We will not delve into the detail contained in the Matrix, except to emphasize that the Strategy constitutes a three year program of the Department.  The implementation of the program will be funded in part from the Department’s baseline budget for the respective financial years and from international donor agencies who have already expressed an interest in our program.

On the information pamphlet on Frequently Asked Questions regarding LGBTI persons; in an effort to ensure that all our public outreach campaigns are well informed, officials and institutions will be capacitated with this pamphlet which provides key information on sexual orientation, gender identity, and lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) persons.  The pamphlet also contains information on institutions that can be approached for support, advice, assistance and referral, such as civil society organizations, chapter 9 institutions and relevant government departments in the JCPS Cluster.

We would like to emphasize that all the documents disseminated here today are living documents.  As we move forward with the implementation thereof, undoubtedly there will be lessons to be learnt.  Let us continue on this trajectory of positive and constructive engagement, for it is through such a process we will collectively achieve the vision set out in the Constitution.

As a Department we have finalised a Policy Framework with regards the need for a specific legal framework for hate crimes.  The next step is to open it for public debate.  What remains to be decided upon is who would be best placed to conduct that policy debate.  For instance we will have to make a decision on whether it should be the Department itself, alternatively bodies such as the Human Rights Commission or the SA Law Reform Commission.  Undoubtedly the debate will be a contentious one given the element of hate speech and the balance that needs to be achieved between freedom of speech and prohibiting hate speech.  Notwithstanding the absence of specifically designated legislation on hate crimes, South Africa’s legal framework is comprehensive enough to ensure that current incidences of crimes involving a bias motive are dealt with severely by the law enforcement agencies.

Developing specific legislation on hate crimes will have a number of advantages.  It will help create a shared definition of hate crimes amongst all those involved in the criminal justice system and it will send a clear message that hate crimes will not be tolerated in South Africa. It will provide additional tools for investigators and prosecutors to hold the perpetrators of hate crimes accountable, and will provide a means to monitor efforts and trends in addressing hate crimes.  Furthermore it will allow for effective coordination between government service providers in order to reduce the impact of secondary victimization on hate crimes victims.

Program Director, 
On this important occasion we would like to take this wonderful opportunity to inform you and the public at large that the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, 1996, has been translated into all 11 official languages and updated to include the Seventeenth Amendment Act of 2012.  The Constitution is also in the process of being translated into braille and will be made available in this regard in the very near future.  Copies of the translated Constitutions will be made available by the Department and are already up on our website. We have indeed brought along a few copies of the Constitution.

 

Program Director, 
As I conclude, please allow me to re-iterate the self-evident fact that indeed we do have a good story to tell.  As Minister of Justice and Constitutional Development it is my constitutional responsibility to promote the Constitution and its values. We urge every South African to learn, know and understand our Constitution. We encourage every South African to exercise their rights including the right to vote, bearing in mind our National Elections 2014 is just a few days away.  Given our tragic history of apartheid and racial exclusion, all South Africans are urged never to take their constitutional rights for granted. Every South African must fully participate in our hard earned democracy, to honour the Constitution and its values, to respect each other noting our interconnectedness with each other as members of one human race. On our part we will continue in our endeavor as government to ensure that all our social, economic and political developments are anchored on the Constitution as the bedrock of our democracy. In this way we are certain and confident that working together we will move South Africa forward!

I thank you! “

– See more at: http://www.justice.gov.za/m_speeches/2014/20140429_LGBTI.html#sthash.qCrpLya6.dpuf

 

 

What is the National Task Team, how is it constituted and what is its aims.

In March 2011, the Minister of Justice and Constitutional Development mandated the establishment of a National Task Team to develop a National Invention Strategy that will address “corrective rape”. The Department initiated engagements with the key government departments and institutions to develop the National Task Team. The NTT is constituted by government departments, chapter nine institutions and civil society organizations that specialize in issues related to LGBTI persons. The work of the NTT is guided by the South African Constitution, which guarantees equality and prohibits discrimination on many grounds, including gender sex and sexual orientation.

Shaine Griqua will then visit all the provinces in helping them to choose the Provincial Task team and from the PTT one member will represent the Province in the National

I love these words from the minister.

“Notwithstanding the comprehensive constitutional and legal framework and protection for LGBTI persons, we have sadly witnessed acts of discrimination and violent attacks being perpetrated against LGBTI persons.”

South Africa’s justice system would deal harshly with those found guilty of such discriminatory behavior, he said.

A national task team had developed a national intervention strategy to deal with gender and sexual orientation- based violence, particularly in the criminal justice system, over the past year.

The terms of reference for the task team and a rapid response task team were developed by representatives of a number of government departments, Chapter Nine institutions and civil society organizations.

The rapid response team comprised the justice and constitutional development department, National Prosecuting Authority, the police, and representatives of civil society organizations.

“The purpose of the rapid response team is to urgently attend to the pending and reported cases in the criminal justice system where hate crimes have been committed against LGBTI persons,” Radebe said.

The team’s terms of reference included a working definition of hate crime, as South Africa did not yet have specifically designated legislation on hate crimes.

“As a department we have finalized a policy framework with regards the need for a specific legal framework for hate crimes.”

The matter would be opened for public debate, but it remained to be decided who would conduct this debate.

“For instance we will have to make a decision on whether it should be the department itself, alternatively bodies such as the (SA) Human Rights Commission or the SA Law Reform Commission.”

The debate was likely to be contentious as such legislation would need to balance freedom of speech with banning hate speech.

“Notwithstanding the absence of specifically designated legislation on hate crimes, South Africa’s legal framework is comprehensive enough to ensure that current incidences of crimes involving a bias motive are dealt with severely by the law enforcement agencies.

 

 

Joburg

Mandisa “The 27” Mathe

27 a 27 c 27 d 27 e 27 f 27 g 27 h

 

Compiled By: Mandisa “The 27” Mathe

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PRESS RELEASE

 

Date:                         10 April 2014

Embargo:                  None

Issued by:                 EC LGBTI Organisation

Contact person:        Zama Mzimela (EC LGBTI Organisation Chairperson)

Contact number:      083 354 8091

 

 

The homophobic Port Elizabeth branch of Home Affairs has once again flouted the constitutional rights of same-sex couples. This branch is now notorious for refusing to marry gay and lesbian couples. There is a pattern. The branch refuses to conduct a civil union;  then, when the story hits the media, there is a profuse apology from management and an undertaking to conduct the ceremony. Then, a year later… the same thing happens again.

 

The ECLGBTI (Eastern Cape Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender Intersex) Organisation has been informed by Lance Ledingham that he was turned away from the PE office of Home Affairs two weeks ago when seeking to set a date for a civil union. He was apparently told by an abrupt official that same-sex marriages are not offered at that branch, nor are they offered at other branches. 

A Home Affairs marriage officer may, in writing, inform the Minister that he or she objects on the ground of conscience, religion and belief to solemnising a civil union between persons of the same sex, whereupon that marriage officer can not be compelled to do so. It is, however, the Department’s responsibility to ensure that a marriage officer is available at the branch who is willing to conduct same-sex unions, or alternatively, arrange for a marriage office from another branch to travel to that branch to conduct the ceremony.

 

The EC LGBTI Organisation rejects this provision in the Civil Union Act. If an individual has a moral objection to same-sex marriages, such person should not be employed by the state as a marriage officer.  Our constitution is clear: no-one may be unfairly discriminated against on grounds of sexual orientation. Government officials should not be able to pick and choose what human rights they are prepared to accept.  Imagine if a home affairs official refused, because of his or her own prejudices, to marry an inter-racial couple – there would be a national outcry. There needs to be a change to the law, as well as a change in attitude by the Department of Home Affairs at every level.

 

The ECLGBTI does not have words to express our outrage. Donovan Wynne and Michael Cronje were turned away from the same office in August 2011.  And Kevin de Lange and Cobus Steyn, in June 2013.

 

After Kevin de Lange alerted ECLBTI Org of his experience in June last year, we were in telephonic contact with the Regional Manager for the Department of Home Affairs, Mr Sibongiseni Biyase, who assured us of three things: (1) Kevin and his partner would be contacted by the Department, an apology offered,  and a ceremony conducted at their convenience, (2) the management responsible for the matter would be disciplined and (3) mechanisms would be put in place to ensure that this would not happen again.

 

Nine months later it has happened again.

 

Clearly there is a problem in Port Elizabeth. We can’t believe that managers at that office are not aware of the provisions of the Civil Union Act, given that the matter has been in the media twice before. The only conclusion that we can draw is that their flagrant disregard for the law is sanctioned from on high.

 

The ECLGBTI Organisation will be writing to the Minister for Home Affairs to demand that the management at the Port Elizabeth branch be suspended. We will demand that competent, progressive individuals employed who will provide services to ALL South Africans, without prejudice.

 

We urge everyone, the LGBTI community and straight people, to stand together against homophobia in all its forms.

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WHY NOT?

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At LK, My cuzin's wedding.

My one and Only Brother I was left with, now he is no more in this world!

What is pain? how can I define it to make one to understand, one has to feel it to understand, I feel it, I am going through it, but I can’t define it, I don’t understand it, that’s means I can’t deal with it?…..I need to deal with it. …….

www.getyourqueeron.com

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Posted on August 13, 2012by

2012 August 12: Quigney, East London. South Africa by Noluthando Hermanus & Zamanguni Mzimela

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About 200 hundred people attended the first 2012 East London Pride!  The first time hosting such event was a success.  Mainly gay and lesbians came from Lusikisiki, Gcuwa and other parts of EL the parade served the purpose. It is on EC LGBTI communities interest to come together fight against Homo(Prejudice) bringing forward challenges faced by LGBTI community.

 

Yes democracy is about majority then the government and the state has the obligation to protect the minority. and “Just because the majority doesn’t agree with the minority doesn’t mean that the minority should be suppressed.” Why should someone be killed because they’re different? Should you really hate someone because they’re different from you? This is not just an EC challenge but Globally!

On the 2013 Pride I would love to see panel discussions between the government officials, traditional leaders and the LGBTI communities in dialogue that will help to improve our lives as citizens of this country. Those conversation need to occur a week before the Parade!!!

Thank you… Hope this is the start of something new in the EC and once again am committed and volunteering myself to help voice out LGBTI concerns…

For Zamanguni Mzimela, of the EC LGBTI, “it has been a long journey, advancing the struggle of the homosexuals in the Eastern Cape, a predominantly rural area. Our province with its beauty, tourist attractions and rich culture, we still have a long way to go in an attempt to succeed in achieving our bigger goals. The pride march was a success, blessed with an awesome weather, guests from various parts of SA, our families and friends. 

Though the numbers were not multitudes, but it was heart warming that the contituents were representative of all society members. A perfect demonstration that together we can achieve anything.
 
However while we celebrate and welcome all the love and support we still have serious concerns around the newly raising concerns of our honourable and respectable CONTRALESA. It is with great concern and urgency that some of their submitions on the media around homosexuality have put our society under an immense amount of pressure, uncertainly and threat. As a country we are fighting for equality, intergrity, humanity and rights for all. We are bttling with the hate crimes and societal dissaproval of our lifestyle. We therefore have a task to call upon our leaders and come to an understanding.
 
We hope that the law enforcement will also be more visible in our next demonstrations. We have worked with them before however we still need to strengthen our relations beyond events and functions. We require them the most at our time of need and vulnerability of our members and in the case with every member of our society.
 
Appreciate the work of the executive in putting together and its unity. It just comes to show that with unity we can achieve anything.  We appreciate the support of our members and sister organizations that offered their love and support. I have an appeal to the greater homo-community. It is important to note that there is more to who we are than our sexuality. We are sons, daughters, siblings to others, friends to some, and yes lovers to others. There is more to US than what outsiders think. There is even more to US than WE ourselves think. We should let it all shine so others can embrace us as WE ARE.  In the same way we want to be respected, let us respect others as well”.
 
The organisation operates in the rural areas, towns and townships of East London:  Luscious, MTV, Mbhashe, Lusikisiki, Mthatha, Butterworth, Idutywa, East London, Mdantsane, Dimbaza, King Williams Town.

 

More photos from EC LGBTI pride are available on facebook. http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.4355323039098.184579.1168374885&type=3

facebook

Image

Posted on August 13, 2012by

2012 August 12: Quigney, East London. South Africa by Noluthando Hermanus & Zamanguni Mzimela

Image

 

About 200 hundred people attended the first 2012 East London Pride!  The first time hosting such event was a success.  Mainly gay and lesbians came from Lusikisiki, Gcuwa and other parts of EL the parade served the purpose. It is on EC LGBTI communities interest to come together fight against Homo(Prejudice) bringing forward challenges faced by LGBTI community.

 

Yes democracy is about majority then the government and the state has the obligation to protect the minority. and “Just because the majority doesn’t agree with the minority doesn’t mean that the minority should be suppressed.” Why should someone be killed because they’re different? Should you really hate someone because they’re different from you? This is not just an EC challenge but Globally!

On the 2013 Pride I would love to see panel discussions between the government officials, traditional leaders and the LGBTI communities in dialogue that will help to improve our lives as citizens of this country. Those conversation need to occur a week before the Parade!!!

Thank you… Hope this is the start of something new in the EC and once again am committed and volunteering myself to help voice out LGBTI concerns…

For Zamanguni Mzimela, of the EC LGBTI, “it has been a long journey, advancing the struggle of the homosexuals in the Eastern Cape, a predominantly rural area. Our province with its beauty, tourist attractions and rich culture, we still have a long way to go in an attempt to succeed in achieving our bigger goals. The pride march was a success, blessed with an awesome weather, guests from various parts of SA, our families and friends. 

Though the numbers were not multitudes, but it was heart warming that the contituents were representative of all society members. A perfect demonstration that together we can achieve anything.
 
However while we celebrate and welcome all the love and support we still have serious concerns around the newly raising concerns of our honourable and respectable CONTRALESA. It is with great concern and urgency that some of their submitions on the media around homosexuality have put our society under an immense amount of pressure, uncertainly and threat. As a country we are fighting for equality, intergrity, humanity and rights for all. We are bttling with the hate crimes and societal dissaproval of our lifestyle. We therefore have a task to call upon our leaders and come to an understanding.
 
We hope that the law enforcement will also be more visible in our next demonstrations. We have worked with them before however we still need to strengthen our relations beyond events and functions. We require them the most at our time of need and vulnerability of our members and in the case with every member of our society.
 
Appreciate the work of the executive in putting together and its unity. It just comes to show that with unity we can achieve anything.  We appreciate the support of our members and sister organizations that offered their love and support. I have an appeal to the greater homo-community. It is important to note that there is more to who we are than our sexuality. We are sons, daughters, siblings to others, friends to some, and yes lovers to others. There is more to US than what outsiders think. There is even more to US than WE ourselves think. We should let it all shine so others can embrace us as WE ARE.  In the same way we want to be respected, let us respect others as well”.
 
The organisation operates in the rural areas, towns and townships of East London:  Luscious, MTV, Mbhashe, Lusikisiki, Mthatha, Butterworth, Idutywa, East London, Mdantsane, Dimbaza, King Williams Town.

 

More photos from EC LGBTI pride are available on facebook. http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.4355323039098.184579.1168374885&type=3

Image

Posted on August 13, 2012by

2012 August 12: Quigney, East London. South Africa by Noluthando Hermanus & Zamanguni Mzimela

Image

 

About 200 hundred people attended the first 2012 East London Pride!  The first time hosting such event was a success.  Mainly gay and lesbians came from Lusikisiki, Gcuwa and other parts of EL the parade served the purpose. It is on EC LGBTI communities interest to come together fight against Homo(Prejudice) bringing forward challenges faced by LGBTI community.

 

Yes democracy is about majority then the government and the state has the obligation to protect the minority. and “Just because the majority doesn’t agree with the minority doesn’t mean that the minority should be suppressed.” Why should someone be killed because they’re different? Should you really hate someone because they’re different from you? This is not just an EC challenge but Globally!

On the 2013 Pride I would love to see panel discussions between the government officials, traditional leaders and the LGBTI communities in dialogue that will help to improve our lives as citizens of this country. Those conversation need to occur a week before the Parade!!!

Thank you… Hope this is the start of something new in the EC and once again am committed and volunteering myself to help voice out LGBTI concerns…

For Zamanguni Mzimela, of the EC LGBTI, “it has been a long journey, advancing the struggle of the homosexuals in the Eastern Cape, a predominantly rural area. Our province with its beauty, tourist attractions and rich culture, we still have a long way to go in an attempt to succeed in achieving our bigger goals. The pride march was a success, blessed with an awesome weather, guests from various parts of SA, our families and friends. 

Though the numbers were not multitudes, but it was heart warming that the contituents were representative of all society members. A perfect demonstration that together we can achieve anything.
 
However while we celebrate and welcome all the love and support we still have serious concerns around the newly raising concerns of our honourable and respectable CONTRALESA. It is with great concern and urgency that some of their submitions on the media around homosexuality have put our society under an immense amount of pressure, uncertainly and threat. As a country we are fighting for equality, intergrity, humanity and rights for all. We are bttling with the hate crimes and societal dissaproval of our lifestyle. We therefore have a task to call upon our leaders and come to an understanding.
 
We hope that the law enforcement will also be more visible in our next demonstrations. We have worked with them before however we still need to strengthen our relations beyond events and functions. We require them the most at our time of need and vulnerability of our members and in the case with every member of our society.
 
Appreciate the work of the executive in putting together and its unity. It just comes to show that with unity we can achieve anything.  We appreciate the support of our members and sister organizations that offered their love and support. I have an appeal to the greater homo-community. It is important to note that there is more to who we are than our sexuality. We are sons, daughters, siblings to others, friends to some, and yes lovers to others. There is more to US than what outsiders think. There is even more to US than WE ourselves think. We should let it all shine so others can embrace us as WE ARE.  In the same way we want to be respected, let us respect others as well”.
 
The organisation operates in the rural areas, towns and townships of East London:  Luscious, MTV, Mbhashe, Lusikisiki, Mthatha, Butterworth, Idutywa, East London, Mdantsane, Dimbaza, King Williams Town.

 

More photos from EC LGBTI pride are available on facebook. http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.4355323039098.184579.1168374885&type=3

Contralesa Hands Off to Our Rights! Proudly African.