South African victory on lesbian rape

Free Gender is a Black lesbian group from Khayelitsha in Cape Town.   The group organised a rally in protest against the lack of government and political  response to ” corrective rape”.

One should ask questions how can people whose rights are infringed vote to the upcoming elections when they are repeatedly victimized and killed in their townships. Let alone being refused citizenship when they report those crimes.

It is clearly true that victims like Zoliswa Nkonyana, whose case is still unresolved. Zoliswa was stoned to death in February 2006, Khayelitsha. Sizakele Sigasa & Salome Masooa callously murdered in 2007, Meadowlands, Soweto. Eudy Simelane who was brutally murdered in April 2008 in KwaThema, Springs. Maduo Mafubedu who was killed in April 2007, Alexandra township. There are unfortunate cases like those of Millicent Gaika, survivor of curative rape that happened in April 2010, Gugulethu. Gaika became the face of survivors, which is one of the major cases that led to the parliament meeting and rally today.

The march coincides with a successful meeting between anti-rape groups – Luleki Sizwe,  Women’s Legal Center, Rape Crisis project, and the South African government to specifically discuss the rape of lesbians, and were able to obtain an agreement for a

“long term sustained engagement of various government arms and civil society groups to research, develop and implement a national action plan to tackle ‘corrective rape’ and the intersecting issues of gender-based violence, anti-LGBTI violence and hate crimes……………

Various representatives of different activist groups and coalitions then went into Parliament for the long promised first meeting with senior officials at the Ministry of Justice and Constitutional Development, who flew to Cape Town for the meeting.

Ndumie Funda, the one-woman founder of Luleki Sizwe who started the campaign, began by delivering the record-breaking170,000 signatures of support from people in 163 countriesaround the world. She then presented a written statement calling on the ministry to embark on an inclusive, long term and sustained process of taking action against ‘corrective’ rape, exactly what they ended up agreeing to.

The Triangle Project, Rape Crises Trust Cape Town and Women’s Legal Centre, three local groups, then presented another statement calling on the ministry to take a series of specific, immediate steps to address the intersecting issues of gender-based violence, anti-LGBTI violence and hate crimes.

More photos from the march here