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Bathabile Dlamini endorses new LGBTIQ desk after Nare Mphela's murder

Eyewitness News logo Eyewitness News 2020-01-13 Theto Mahlakoana
a boy wearing a hat: African National Congress Women’s League president Bathabile Dlamini. © Abigail Javier/EWN African National Congress Women’s League president Bathabile Dlamini.

JOHANNESBURG - The African National Congress Women’s League (ANCWL) said it had no choice but to form its new LGBTIQ desk after the suggestion that the community be included in ANC structures was dismissed by its national executive committee years ago.

As the ANC celebrated its 108th birthday in Kimberley last week, the organisation used the occasion to launch the new unit, which will focus on the rights of vulnerable groups South Africa.

Hate crimes have been on the increase in the country. Members of the LGBTIQ community have been pleading for the prioritisation of their protection for years. ANCWL president Bathabile Dlamini said not everyone in the party recognised this need.

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“They did not want to discuss the matter. That’s why we had to step back.”

The women’s league resolved to formalise the party’s LGBTIQ forum at its congress back in 2015. Dlamini said they had hoped to tackle the injustices faced by the community.

“We want to ensure that we don’t lose lives due to carelessness and an aggressive attitude.”

Just last week, Limpopo transgender activist Nare Mphela’s decomposing body was found in Parkmore outside Mokopane.

Police confirmed the victim had been stabbed several times.

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