On Monday, hundreds of South African activists stood outside of the Parliament, calling on Justice Minister Jeff Radebe to take action against the prevalence of “corrective rape” in South Africa.
For any folks who don’t know what “corrective rape” is, it’s when a lesbian is raped by a man in order to “cure” them of being gay. Pretty horrific, right? In fact, so much that it’s been resulting in suicides. Monday’s rally was led by a support group:
Led by the Luleki Sizwe group the activists have collected more than 170,000 signatures against corrective rape.
Activist Ndumie Funda founded Luleki Sizwe to rescue, feed and nurse to health survivors of corrective rape in 10 Cape Town townships. Luleki Sizwe is run by four female volunteers. Funda’s fiancée was herself a victim of corrective rape.
Funda said they wanted the justice ministry to set up a special commission that would come up with a plan to deal with hate crimes against gays and lesbians.
“We have shown that we can mobilise tens of thousands of people, and the ministry now knows that they can no longer ignore our long fight against corrective rape. The question now is what they will actually do about it. The ball is in their court.”
Marlow Valentine of the Triangle Project, another LGBTI rights group, added that there hasn’t been one prosecution for “corrective rape” yet. In the meantime, a study late last year showed that over 1 in 3 men in South Africa admitted to rape. If these aren’t indications to Parliament that serious action needs to be taken, I don’t know what is.