Melanie Nathan , 02/26/2012
Johannesburg, South Africa – The Mr. Gay World Organization has announced that Taurai Zhanje, the delegate from Zimbabwe has withdrawn from the competition due to ‘personal reasons’.
This year the competition is being held in Johannesburg, South Africa, a direct neighbor to Zimbabwe.
Last week I reported that for the first time black Africans will participate in the Mr. Gay World contest being held in Johannesburg, South Africa, sending a powerful message of hope to LGBTI people in Africa and the rest of the World.
The director of Mr. Gay World for Africa, Coenie Kukkuk said: “We are sad to loose Taurai, but in Africa, the personal sacrifice for gay and human rights is sometimes too much to expect from people. Taurai already made a very brave stand against the oppression of the rights of gay, lesbian, bisexual, transsexual and intersex persons and we have to respect his decision. We wish him and his family only the best for the future.”
It is no wonder that Mr Gay Zimbabwe is unable to participate – Imagine enduring this kind of rhetoric from the President of your Country and then participating in a world event that garnishes major publicity? in an AP Report today via Harare, Zimbabwe’s president Robert Mugabe has wound up his 88th birthday celebrations by telling the youth to shun Western values, homosexuality and greed. Mugabe, hosting a lavish birthday bash in the eastern city of Mutare, says some African leaders have become “weak and naive” and think only of material gains when “kneeling” to Westerners.
Mugabe turned 88 on Tuesday. Organizers from his party said 20 000 people attended the celebrations. Unacceptable Western values included same-sex marriages, Mugabe said. “We reject that outright and say to hell with you,” he said in a nationwide broadcast of the event.
Kukkuk said that they will “explore all avenues to find another country from Africa to take Zimbabwe’s place, but that the general political climate in Africa is not conducive to LGBTI rights being recognized and that it will be very difficult to do so.”
Recently, at an African Union summit in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa, United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon has urged African leaders to respect gay human rights.
The Mr Gay World competition is defined as an annual contest for gay men, seeking to establish ambassadors for LGBT and human rights, with winners of national contests competing as delegates in a variety of categories.
It is not a beauty contest and there is no age limit.
This competition is the most publicized gay contest in the world and unashamedly uses the attention it garners to focus attention on the plight of LGBTI people worldwide, with the focus in 2012 being on African LGBTI people specifically.
The delegates chosen on a global stage will display inner beauty attributes of confidence, self assurance, charisma and natural leadership and are also conscientious about outward appearance. The participants also have knowledge of LGBTI general history and recent news.
There were four participating black Africans and now the number is reduced to three. Hopefully the competition will secure another black African participant, notwithstanding the awkwardness of criminalization of homosexuality in so many African countries. Read more from earlier article at https://oblogdeeoblogda.wordpress.com/2012/02/21/mr-gay-world-includes-finalists-from-criminalizing-african-countries/
The competition is set to take place in Johannesburg, South Africa, from 4 to 8 April 2012.
For more, see the websites www.mrgayworld.org and www.mrgsa.co.za and for online bookings for the Grand Finale see http://online.computicket.com/web/event/mr_gay_world_2012_grand_finale/477720853/referer:-highlights-index-2-0-2012_04_08-grid-
SEE Article about Mugabe’s latest rant https://oblogdeeoblogda.wordpress.com/2012/02/26/insulting-mandela-while-zimbabwe-president-mugabe-tells-west-to-go-to-hell/