Gays and lesbians will march in Khayelitsha
This week the third Khumbulani LGBTI Pride is taking place in Khayelitsha and Cape Town city centre. The main event, a march, will be held on Saturday in Khayelitsha. It starts at 9:30am from OR Tambo Hall.
Funeka Soldaat, who is the founder of FreeGender and part of the organising team said that Khumbulani Pride events are mostly based in townships because most homophobic attacks happen in townships.
Soldaat said that Khumbulani Pride is different from Cape Town Pride because the aim of the Khumbulani events is to educate and create awareness on the issues gays, lesbians and transgender people face in the township.
“The pre pride march events are very educational and they provide information about sexuality and information about different LGBTI [Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transexual, Intersex] organisations in the townships,” Soldaat said.
“During the march we are not going to have stores in the street that sells dildos like the Cape Town Pride March. Instead we going to have stores with information about LGBTI and sexuality,” she said.
Bulelwa Phanda from Inclusive and Affirming Ministries said that Khumbulani Pride was launched due to the homophobic violence that was happening in townships.
“When we from the townships attend the Cape Town pride, our issues as gays from the townships are not addressed and we feel left out. We have issues of homophobic attacks. We are not catered for,” said Phanda.
Phanda who is a religious Christian says her involvement in Pride is to tell people that God does not judge them and that people should go to church despite their sexuality. She also said that in the townships heterosexual people tell those who are homosexual that it is ungodly to be lesbian or gay, and people tend to discriminate or stay in the closet due to that myth.
Charlie Thakati who is from Gender Dynamics said, “We want to tell the people in our communities that we LGBTI are proud and that we are still going to stay in our community and that they must accept us.”
According to the organisers, the initial motive of Khumbulani Pride was the murder of Zoliswa Nkonyana who died in 2006. They said that since then the number of hate crimes has escalated in the townships. Khumbulani means “remembrance”, and the events will mourn “the loss and brutality targeted at sexual minorities”.
Today at 4pm there will be a discussion with traditional healers on uniting against homophobia, transgender and xenophobia. Venue: 33 Vunani Chambers building, 8th floor Cape Town.
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