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This article participates on the following special index pages:
New Constitution-making process - Index of articles
to mark Zimbabwe’s 33rd anniversary of Independence
Gays and Lesbians of Zimbabwe (GALZ)
April 18, 2013
33 years of Independence today. GALZ joins the nation in celebrating
and honouring Zimbabwe’s men and women who sacrificed their
lives to bring freedom for ALL. One of the reasons for the struggle
for independence was to bring about equality for all before the
law and GALZ strives to see this becoming a reality in present day
GALZ was formed with the principal objective of fighting for equality
for gays and lesbians under the law. In our founding constitution,
“The principle objective of GALZ shall be to build an organization
which is democratic and accountable and which shall strive for the
attainment of full and equal rights in all aspects of life for all
gay men and lesbians within Zimbabwe. GALZ will pursue this objective
for all gay men and lesbians regardless of their sexual orientation
or preference, race, class, gender or religion.” We wanted
to be a visible part of Zimbabwe and we remain on course in our
quest to achieving equality for our lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender
and intersex communities.
the important milestones that we have achieved throughout our journey.
We largely remain visible to serve our community. Since its formation,
the organisation is still in existence, we have won court battles,
we have contributed to national processes and we continue to give
hope to our community.
We are concerned
that the state continues to vilify our kind and actively violates
and harasses our kin. As a result our community lives in fear of
violence and abuse because they have witnessed abuse or encountered
violent homophobic slurs. The law facilitates harassment of LGBTI
individuals because of their real or perceived sexual orientation
or gender identity. Since the key problem faced by gays and lesbians
in Zimbabwe is the 'culture of silence', the Government's strategy
of preventing GALZ from serving its community and not to allowing
GALZ to participate in national processes nonetheless turns into
a major public controversy, generates huge media attention and places
homosexuality firmly on the Zimbabwean national agenda albeit in
a negative way, we continue to be inspired.
We demand an
end to the vilification, abuse and dehumanisation of LGBTI individuals
in Zimbabwe. We also encourage that state to support the work of
all human rights defenders including those working in defence of
the right to non-discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation
and gender identity.
We hope that
the adoption of a new constitution will signify a departure from
the inherited, archaic British colonial laws that are used to punish
and discriminate LGBTI individuals. Even in an extremely fraught
environment, sustained activism based on a politics of hope can
win extremely inspirational victories, as it is the basic policy
of GALZ, to turn apparent defeat into triumph. This positive attitude
stems from the pride we have in ourselves, the confidence and determination
that we will succeed in normalising the position of LGBT people
Visit the GALZ
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