South Africa-LGBT-Conference

S/Africa to host world LGBT gathering in 2024

APA-Pretoria (South Africa)

South Africa’s Justice and Constitutional Development Minister Ronald Lamola on Tuesday commended the country’s civil society organisations for securing the rights to host the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association conference in Cape Town in 2024.

The civil society organisations, led by Gender Dynamix and IRANT, secured the rights to host the conference representing the world’s largest gathering of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transsexual, queer, intersex and asexual+ (LGBTQIA+) persons to be held in 2024.  

The minister called on the local communities to respect the rights of LGBTQIA+ persons in the country as the world marked International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia on Tuesday.

The minister said the hosting of the huge gathering was a significant move towards furthering inclusivity in South Africa.

“With help from civil society organisations such as Gender Dynamix and IRANTI, we are constructing a truly inclusive society – one which not only accepts, but celebrates diversity, where people can be themselves no matter what their sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, sex characteristics, and where everyone has the same enjoyment of their human rights,” Lamola said.

The ministry said the bid was indicative of the fact that the country still “has much work to do” to protect and promote the rights of LGBTQIA+ persons in communities.

“Despite our progressive laws and legislation, discrimination, prejudice, and violence on the basis of a person’s sex, sexual orientation, and gender identity, gender expression and sex characteristics still exists,” the minister said. 

He added: “We have no doubt that this platform will enable us, as society, to heighten our institutional mechanisms and to address societal attitudes so as to prevent homophobia, transphobia, and the general violation of human rights in our communities.”

The conference was last held on African soil some 25 years ago in Johannesburg following the UN World Health Organisation’s decision in 1990 to declassify homosexuality as a mental disorder.

NM/jn/APA

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