South Africa: Lesbian Murdered in Hate Crime

Duduzile Zozo was murdered for being an out Lesbian in Ekurhuleni, which has a history of violence against lesbians. (Photo Credit: Duduzile Zozo's Facebook Page)

Duduzile Zozo was murdered for being an out Lesbian in Ekurhuleni, which has a history of violence against lesbians. (Photo Credit: Duduzile Zozo’s Facebook Page)

Mambaonline is reporting that another lesbian hate crime has occurred in Ekurhuleni over the weekend. Ekurhuleni, which is close to Johannesburg, has been the site of several high-profile murders of out lesbians over the last few years. The author writes:

The Daily Sun reported on Monday that the half-naked body of 26-year-old Duduzile Zozo was found in Thokoza, Ekurhuleni, outside of Johannesburg, on Sunday morning.

Police revealed that they had discovered a toilet brush rammed into her vagina.

Zozo’s grieving mother, Thuziwe Zozo, told the newspaper that she suspects that her daughter was murdered because of her sexuality.

“She was a lesbian but she has never had any problems before. People loved and appreciated her,” she said.

In 2011, marches were held in Ekurhuleni to remember lesbians who had been attacked in the municipality. Among those killed, LGBT rights activist Noxolo Nogwaza, 24, whose body was found in a drainage ditch choked with trash and high reeds. The mother of two was repeatedly stabbed with glass and stones were found near her body, leading many to conclude that she had been stoned to death.

In April 2013, the body of openly lesbian Patricia Mashigo, 36, a self-employed sales woman and mother of two, was discovered out in the open in the Daveyton township. She also appeared to have been stoned to death.

Same-sex marriage is legal in South Africa, making it one of the most progressive countries on the matter, especially on the continent of Africa. Unfortunately cultural attitudes have been slow to change. Some 30+ brutal acts against lesbians have been documented in South Africa, mostly in townships, and some suggest the number is higher because some women refuse to come forward. Men who attack lesbian women, often in the form of rape – referred to as ‘corrective rape,’ falsely believe that male penetration will change them.

The Mambaonline.com author writes:

Last week, the Department of Justice and Constitutional Development (DOJ&CD) issued a statement about the status of its controversial National Task Team which is aimed at “promoting and enhancing the rights of LGBTI communities” with the immediate priority “to address violence against LGBTI people”.

Violence against openly gay lesbians is literally a matter of life and death in South Africa and something has to done about it if the country wants to continue to move forward.

This post was written by Nsenga K. Burton, Ph.D., founder & editor-in-chief of the award-winning news site The Burton Wire.

Read more at Mambaonline.com.

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