Luleki Sizwe , a campaign group of lesbian survivors of so called “corrective rape” are celebrating the fact that over 100,000 people from 163 countries, have signed their petition calling on South Africa’s Minister of Justice to combat ‘corrective rape’.
So called “corrective rape”, where women perceived to be lesbians are raped in order to ‘turn’ them straight or ‘cure’ them of their sexual orientation - is becoming increasingly common in South Africa.
Luleki Sizwe, the volunteer anti-rape advocacy group in the townships of Cape Town initiated the petition to ask the government to condemn “corrective rape” as a hate crime.
South Africa guarantees the rights of gay and lesbian people, including the right to same sex marriages but hate crimes on the basis of sexual orientation are not recognized by South African law. In the last 10 years 31 lesbian women have been murdered because of their sexuality. More than 10 lesbians a week are raped or gang raped in Cape Town alone.
A spokesperson for Luleki Sizwe said. ‘Our fight against corrective rape has been going on for so long, under the most harrowing of circumstances, with only a few volunteers to help.
‘It seemed that nobody was listening, nobody cared, and our sisters were getting raped, beaten up and murdered without anyone doing anything about it. In absolute frustration, we decided to write a petition.’
The campaign has already achieved some success when the issue aired on South African National TV and Justice Minister Radebe admitted he was “Very deeply concerned” about the subject and was willing to meet with activists to discuss the issue further.
For further information or updates about this campaign, go to lulekisizwe.wordpress.com/
If you haven’t already signed the ‘Corrective Rape’ petition, please sign and share it with your friends:
If your organization or community group, already work with survivors of “corrective rape” who are based in the UK or with survivors who have traveled to the UK, we would like to speak to you. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for further details.