The LGBT+ community in South Africa is facing an unprecedented level of violence and persecution, SABC News reports.
Members of a gay rights group in the province of Limpopo say they are living in fear following attacks against gay and lesbian people in the area.
Cindy Maotoana is the director of ‘Limpopo LGBTI Proudly Out’ and has called upon the local community to stand up against the recent spate of violence.
“I just want to say to the community that we need your support. LGBTI’s are hiding because they are scared of being raped and being brutally burned or something could happen, so we are here asking support from the province," she said.
“We are human beings, we need you. Nothing is wrong with us. We do not need to be killed is just a little difference that our orientation differs from the people, does mean we deserve to be brutally killed,” she said.
“It does not mean someone has to rape and kill me or even burn me. Can you imagine someone being burned alive? It is not good what they are doing to us,” Maotoana added.
While same-sex marriage is legal in South Africa and discrimination based on sexual orientation is unconstitutional, public opinion does not match the legal rights of the LGBT+ community.
According to a 2013 survey, 61 per cent of the country’s population said homosexuality should not be accepted in society.