- Minister Ronald Lamola pleaded for tolerance towards the LGBTIQ+ community.
- Lamola emphasised that there was too much anger and hatred towards the LGBTIQ+ community.
- He urged people to recommit themselves to the promotion and protection of the human rights of LGBTIQ+ people.
"We cannot claim to want human rights for ourselves, but deny it for others."
Justice and Correctional Services Minister Ronald Lamola has urged South Africans to respect the LGBTIQ+ community.
Lamola was addressing the LGBTIQ+ Inclusion and Empowerment Workshop at the Women's Jail in Braamfontein on Wednesday.
"Let us recommit ourselves to the promotion and protection of human rights for all, especially for those in the LGBTIQ+ communities.
"I urge our communities to reflect on what prompts them to respond with such violence, intolerance and disdain to people who are of a different sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression or sexual characteristics," said Lamola.
"This is more significant as we celebrate the 25th anniversary of our Constitution, a Constitution born from negotiations following years of conflict and strife in our country.
"We have committed to lay the foundations for a democratic and open society in which government is based on the will of people and the law equally protects every citizen," Lamola said.
He said the government had committed to improving the quality of all citizens and advancing each person's potential.
Lamola said many people in the LGBTIQ+ community, regrettably, did not enjoy the fruits of these constitutional aspirations.
The minister later paid tribute to several people who were murdered this year, allegedly due to their sexuality.
- Bonang Gaelae, 29
- Nonhlanhla Kunene, 37
- Sphamandla Khoza, 34
- Nathaniel "Spokgoane" Mbele
- Khulekani Gomazi, 27
- Andile "Lulu" Nthuthela 41
- Lonwabo Jack, 22
- Lucky Kleinboy Motshabi, 30
- Phelokazi Mqathana, 24
- Lindokuhle Mapu, 23
- Aubrey Boshoga, 48
- Masixole Level, 28
- Anele Bhengu, 28
- Lulama Mvandaba
- Motse Moeketsi, 36
- Sheila Lebelo, 33
- Thapelo Sehata, 23 and
- Sisanda Gumede, 28
"Arguably, the difference may be that in this instance, the discrimination is not occasioned by an oppressive regime, but rather at the hands of our brothers and sisters.
"We live in a constitutional democracy which strives to ensure freedom, human dignity and equality for all - yet for LGBTIQ+ persons, these ideals are unattainable for so long as they face discrimination and violence in their daily lives.
"On numerous occasions in our communities, we see people choosing violence instead of embracing and celebrating diversity. Government has made a number of interventions to protect and promote the rights of LGBTIQ+ persons," Lamola said.