By Nomathemba Zondo
Homosexuals in Bulawayo said they need to be treated like all other beings in society because it is part of their human rights.
Homosexuals said they are not being treated like normal human beings yet there is nothing abnormal about them.
“The society is treating us like deviants, criminals it is as if we are some kind of species or something,” said one of the gay interviewees.
One of the interviewees said, “I am a woman trapped inside a male body and I feel it is not my fault that I was born like this.”
Interviewees said they face different challenges even in their families which is the reason most of them prefer to keep it to themselves.
“The most painful part about being gay is the fact that our family members find it hard to accept that we are not ‘normal’ as they say,” said another interviewee. “My mom was really hurt when she found out that I was gay. She tried by all means to change me. For example she would force me to join soccer at school thinking maybe I would change and become a boy but unfortunately nothing changed.”
Some interviewees also highlighted that they are usually assaulted both physically and emotionally because of their sexuality.
“This other day I went to Mhlahlandlela to conduct my data gathering as I walked in the secretary stared at me in an unusual manner then when I spoke to her she gave me attitude, added another interviewee. “She intentionally wanted to provoke me maybe to cause a scene and I was really hurt. I just wanted to collect data but felt like I was now being unnecessarily interrogated for a crime that I did not even commit.”
Though some organisations such as Sexual Rights Centre (SRC) and Gays and Lesbians of Zimbabwe (GALZ) try to raise awareness sexuality and to advocate for tolerance on same sex relationships both homosexuals and bisexual face a lot of discrimination.