By Melanie Nathan, July 05, 2012.
While South African authorities continue to bungle investigations and fail to provide protection, panic and anger seems to be increasing amongst South Africa’s LGBTI Township communities, with the recent spate of hate murders.
Yet another lesbian is reported raped and murdered. The 29 year old was found brutally raped and murdered, according to Limpopo LGBTI Proudly Out’s Cindy Molefe. The victim, Hendrietta Thapelo Morifi, known as Andritha, was discovered by her mother on Saturday at her home in Polo Park, Mokopane.
After not answering her door, Andriitha’s mother broke in to blood-drenched underwear on the floor and her daughter’s body on a bed close by. Reports indicate that the young woman neck had been slit from ear to ear.
Andritha is survived by her mother and a two-year-old daughter.
According to unsubstantiated reports two men were arrested caught wearing the victims clothes but released for lack of evidence.
While one such case of Nontsikelelo Tyatyeka case is being tried in the Wynberg Magistrate Court, during the past few weeks we have reports of at least four other murders of LGBTI South Afrcans, including the recent brazen shooting of 22-year-old Phumeza Nkolonzi at her Nyanga, Cape Town, home. Thapelo Makhutle, a 24-year-old gay/trans individual who was mutilated and murdered in the Northern Cape. Neil Daniels was stabbed and set alight in Cape Town. This weekend a 28-year-old Sanna Supa was killed in Soweto.
How many more South Africans will die as a result of homophobia before the Zuma led government steps forward to announce that homophobia is un-African. Instead the audible silence, together with the recent anti-gay attacks on the South African Constitution by Traditional leaders, serves to perpetuate the myth that being gay is un-African and hence violence is justified.
It is time for action –
- Crimes committed where hate is a motivation must carry stronger sentences, through the implementation of hate crimes legislation.
- Victims and families must receive more government support; police must be trained and equipped to protect and investigate
- The government must embark upon a radical education campaign to counter the myth that being attracted to a member of the same-sex is un-African.
- President Zuma should publicly call on the Traditional Leaders to scrap their discussions about stripping fellow South Africans of their constitutional rights.
- All members of parliament who fail to uphold their oath to protect the constitution of South Africa should be reprimanded and recalled, as being unworthy of office.
- South Africa should ensure the revocation of any counter-productive process that can take away rights.
See my earlier article where I outlined action necessary in South Africa to help curb the violence – http://www.gaystarnews.com/article/south-africa-must-change-its-tune-lgbti-citizens030712