At the forefront of our struggle, at this time of sadness… Activists from Gay Umbrella leading the way to the sport grounds before the Memorial service of Disebo Gift Makau...
Angry community members demanding justice for Disebo…
On the right is Mr P.de Wit from the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) waiting for the memorandum to be signed.
Ayihlale phansi ibambe umthetho
Member of the Gay Umbrella in Mafikeng at the forefront of the march entering the sport grounds.
Sekwanele manje is a Zulu expression which means ‘Enough is enough…”
Malusi John Tau in a white t-shirt (centred) by fellow comrades leading the march to the Ventersdorp Police Station
Fed up community members holding placards with strong messages…
Mildred Maropefele, head of Gay Umbrella organisation in Mafikeng…
Even policemen can be documenters…
Councillor Mapule Mataboge signing the memorandum before it was handed over to the NPA representative
… with Thabiso from Gay Umbrella.
Col. H. Vermeulen in charge of the march…
After the march the protesters proceeded to the Makau home where the prayer meeting was held…
Photos by Lindeka Qampi
Text by Odidi Mfenyana
A month before in the same Centre for the Book, almost in the exact same spot as Zanele Muholi sat on Wednesday 20 August 2014 for the Debate on Homosexuality in Africa hosted by Centre for Conflict Resolution (CCR), stood the legendary Angela Davis.
Discussing the evolution of racism Angela Davis asked us to no longer be surprised by incidents of racism. Davis asked us to work steadfastly and comprehensively towards a non-racist society, knowing that racism exists n permeates our everyday existence.
Zanele Muholi a month later stood at the same place drawing attention to South Africa’s most fashionable hate crime of the moment “Corrective Rape”.
Not wanting to be drawn into an academic talk shop about the origins of African homosexuality, Muholi went for the jugular reality.
Zanele named all the high profile hate crimes since 2003 starting with the horrific mass murder at Sizzlers in Sea Point and ending with the recent gruesome rape and murder of Gift Makau in Ventersdorp.
No sooner had the “debate” come to its flaccid end when Muholi had my manager book me on the first flight to Jozi to join her covering the Memorial Service in Ventersdorp. It was time to roll up my sleeves n get stuck in.
Meeting at the boarding gate Thursday morning at 6am we landed n Muholi’s driver took us straight to Ventersdorp.
Ventersdorp already synonymous with racist White Supremacy n blighted by the legend of Eugene Terreblanche, now added the death of Disebo Gift Makau to its gothic accolades.
When we arrived at lunchtime Thursday, to my surprise a full media circus had rolled into town with the ruling party in full force of condemnation n indignation. ANC t-shirts were on almost every citizen. A new civil organisation under the Gay Umbrella was formed. A suspect had been apprehended. A union of Mothers of previously raped and murdered lesbians had come from Gauteng to lend support. Even CNN had come round for interviews.
The memorial service was more than well organised it was typical overreaction. Instead if homophobia, misogyny and poverty had been positively proactively been challenged, if previous cases had been properly investigated and successfully prosecuted we would not have been standing at another Memorial of a raped and murdered young woman in Women’s Month.
Again the LGBT community had to force its way onto the service’s programme after it seemed it was about to turn into an election rally.
“We want action! why must we still fight for rights”
Was the call from fellow women n lesbians
“we are tired of condemnation we want proactive action”
In Tshing, Ext. 2, Ventersdorp, people have grown tired of looking back in anger. People want a change for the better living the rights of our Constitution.
With that said it is time that Black Queer Artists take a stand and denounce the ongoing hate crimes in our townships. We need to produce work that focus mainly on these atrocities. We can’t rely on governmental mandates and foreign sympathy because it is WE (LGBTI community) who are being brutalized and murdered on daily basis.