‘There’s nothing extraordinary about interracial couples’
An interracial couple spoke to IOL’s Mojo team in Johannesburg about their experiences and especially their different cultural backgrounds.
The topic of mixed race relationship or interracial relationships booked a central place in the political discourse of South Africa in 1930. In 1938 two parties (The Purified National Party of D.F Malan and the United Party of Hertzog and Smuts) were set to contest in the elections which revolved around which party was most opposed to mixed race relationships and the policy best equipped to prevent it.
The 1938 saw the National Party banning the interracial intimate relationships in South Africa, in order to maintain its racial boundaries and racial purity.
Today we have thousands of interracial couples in South African, with no law that prohibits them to be together. It is no longer a foreign thing to be in a relationship with someone from another race, it's just so normal as long as there are two souls that love each other.
William Lohrmann is 32 years old, grew up in Joburg suburbia, working at CAMCO Clean Energy as the manager of African projects. His father is English and his mother is Afrikaans. His girlfriend Lungi Zakwe is also 32 years old, grew up in Soweto, working at Treatment Action Campaign, as a COO and national manager, her mother is Xhosa and her father is Zulu.
The couple has been together for 2 years, despite their race and different cultural backgrounds they never let anything to jeopardize their relationship. Lungi said that people should start seeing interracial couples as normal couples and that there is nothing extraordinary about them “it shouldn't be a thing, people should see interracial relationships as a normal thing, I always cringe when people don't get this, we are just real about our feelings and we are in love” she said.
William said that they don't encounter too much challenges in Johannesburg as it is a tolerant place.
He said that he likes the way they greet in Lungi's culture that it has a greater idea of humanity “ I like their way of greeting sanibonani it has a greater idea of humanity I find it very interesting” said William.
The couple does not have children at the moment; they say that in future when they do they would like it to be about celebrating and embracing both cultures.