DA hits out at Shembe anti-gay remarks

2015-11-23 22:45
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Durban - The DA say they are “dismayed" at the alleged remarks made by the Shembe Church leader, Mduduzi Shembe who reportedly said that gays were responsible for the drought crippling the KwaZulu-Natal province.

Shembe apparently made the remarks at the Enyokeni Palace at the weekend.

East Cape Radio reported that the Commission for Gender Euqality was also investigating the incident.

DA provincial leader Zwakele Mncwango said the remarks were "outrageous" and also "inflammatory".

“In a society that respects and obeys the leader’s orders, it is rather disturbing when a leader makes such remarks. This automatically puts every gay person in danger to be attacked for ‘causing drought’ in the province.”

Mncwango called on the Shembe church members to “come out strongly against their leader’s utterances and distance themselves from such remarks”.

He added that Section 9 (3) of South Africa's Constitution prohibited unfair discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation.

“The remark smacks all the efforts that have been made to end the discrimination of people according to their sexual orientation."

Durban Lesbian and Gay Community and Health Centre director Nonhlanhla Mkhize said the negative statements from the religious leader took society backward.

“It seems like these comments were an attempt to galvanise support. We are shocked and appalled by this type of thinking. It is frustrating, because there are many who battle to be accepted if they are gay or lesbian. These comments do not allow one to be themselves amongst their religious denomination.” 

The Shembe Church leader could not be reached for comment. 

Read more on:    da  |  durban  |  gay rights  |  drought

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