On Thursday evening, South African actress and musician, Simphiwe Dana took to Twitter to share her sexuality with her followers.
In a series of tweets, the Nzima hit-maker announced that she was gay and revealed that she would be getting married to Berlin-based opera singer, Pumeza Matshikiza.
“I’ve been holding this in since forever. I’m gay,” she wrote.
I’ve been holding this in since forever. I’m gay— #BamakoIsHere (@simphiwedana) November 5, 2020
“I’m marrying her. She’s coming home to me today. We are so happy,” she captioned a picture of Matshikiza.
She then continued to explain how she anticipated to receive backlash for coming out but said she had made peace with that.
I know coming out means Africa will block me. But, after a lot of thinking, I’m ok with it. I’m marrying a woman, and I’ve never been happier— #BamakoIsHere (@simphiwedana) November 5, 2020
In a country where LGBTI+ individuals often have to hide their sexuality because of the fear of shame, being cast out and in many instances, violence - Dana's coming out will hopefully encourage more conversations around sexuality and gender, and will work towards breaking down the stigma and hatred that's often inflicted on LGBTI+ bodies.
While there were mixed reactions to her sharing her truth, it was a brave and bold step that we hope will have a positive influence on matters related to LGBTI+ in SA.
Thank you for your courage in living out your truth. I know this was not an easy decision to make, because of the ignorance + prejudice still directed at members of the LGBTQ community.— Karyn Maughan (@karynmaughan) November 6, 2020
But please know there are many out here who stand with you.
There is far more love than hate
Listen!!!!!! We’re here for it. For all of it. Sending you and your partner lots of love. ????— Rami Chuene??????? (@ramichuene) November 5, 2020
I'm happy for you Simphiwe. Just know the ????? community is always here with you. Love and light to you on this journey ??— bitch looking kinda sus (@miss_anathea) November 5, 2020
Your happiness comes first Sisi, whether people block you or not. . You shouldn’t really care much about that. And Congratulations??— Siyasamkela (@SiyaMtitshana) November 5, 2020
This is beautiful news. Congrats my love!!!! Wishing you boundless joy.— Lebogang Mashile (@lebomashile) November 5, 2020
Earlier this year Generations: The Legacy actress, Letoya Makhene also came out as lesbian after confirming that she was in a relationship with Lebohang Keswa. The couple has since gotten engaged.