DURBAN - Awareness for the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgendered (LGBT) Community is still on the rise as the world observes the International Day against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia. The day commemorates the decision to remove homosexuality from the International Classification of Diseases of the World Health Organization.
For South Africa, the day comes after the killing of several queer people in the past few months.
Sphamandla Khoza was murdered in April in Ntuzuma, allegedly for being gay. The man arrested for his murder is due back in court on May 31.
The Rainbow Organisation for the LGBT community said people needed to be educated so that the stigma around homosexuality could be eradicated.
“Now we are in a space where we call things as they are, homosexuality is not a disorder or spiritual attack. Most people still classify us like that, so this day should help in enlightening people with the aim to erase this stigma. More should be done to erase this stigma, in the same energy it was published,” said Sondelani Mwandla, an executive member of the Rainbow Organisation.
The Commission of Gender Equality (CGE) said the day should be used to educate the public.
“We are still far behind as a country, considering the killings of queer people. We have a progressive Constitution, but we still hear that queer people are being killed and not being accepted,” said Javu Baloyi of the CGE.