Saturday, March 09, 2013

(NEWZIMBABWE) Gays, lesbians condemn 'reckless' Tsvangirai

Gays, lesbians condemn 'reckless' Tsvangirai
08/03/2013 00:00:00
by Staff Reporter

THE Gays and Lesbians of Zimbabwe (GALZ) slammed Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai on Friday after he told a public meeting in Harare that marriage “should be between a man and a woman”.

Tsvangirai told supporters in Glen View suburb on Wednesday night: “In the draft constitution, we said marriage is between a man and a woman. If some want to marry another from the same sex, then they have a problem. Why do you want to sleep with another man?”

The MDC-T leader’s views on homosexuality have been a moving target. Having condemned gays before, he travelled to London in October 2011 where he told the BBC that gay rights were a "human right" that conservative Zimbabweans should respect.

He told the BBC: "It's a very controversial subject in my part of the world. My attitude is that I hope the constitution will come out with freedom of sexual orientation, for as long as it does not interfere with anybody.
"To me, it's a human right.”

But the comments put Tsvangirai in direct confrontation with supporters in Zimbabwe, forcing his MDC-T party to declare that he was expressing his personal opinion in the BBC interview.
Zimbabwe is to hold a referendum on March 16 on a draft constitution. It explicitly bans same-sex marriage.

GALZ, which had campaigned for the recognition of gays, said it had been disappointed by Tsvangirai’s latest comments which it described as “reckless”.

In a statement, it said: “GALZ is of the view that Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai’s statements fuel public prejudice against LGBTI individuals and contradict the very preamble of a draft constitution that he is seemingly promoting.

“The PM has been jolted into castigating violence in Headlands recently, however we find him equally guilty of inciting violence and advocating hatred and hate speech on the LGBTI community in Zimbabwe.”
President Robert Mugabe has railed against homosexuals, whom he famously described as “worse than pigs and dogs”.

GALZ said Tsvangirai’s latest comments proved he has failed to “uphold his commitment to human rights and the acceptance of diversity.”

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