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SAHRC to investigate after CT venue refuses to host gay wedding

Management at Beloftebos Wedding Venue told Megan Watling and Sasha-Lee Heekes it wouldn't host their special day next year because of their sexual orientation.

Megan Watling and Sasha-Lee Heekes wanted to get married at the Beloftebos venue in Stanford but were told that venue was off-limits because of their sexual orientation. Picture: Supplied

CAPE TOWN - The South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) will investigate after a lesbian couple was denied a wedding at a Stanford venue.

Management at Beloftebos Wedding Venue told Megan Watling and Sasha-Lee Heekes it wouldn't host their special day next year because of their sexual orientation.

Human rights commissioner Andre Gaum said: “We believe one cannot, on the basis of religion, trample on the other rights, especially the right to equality and dignity.”

At the same time, a rights group is outraged after the lesbian couple was denied a wedding at the venue.

The Triangle Project's Sharon Cox said the decision by Beloftebos was unlawful and discriminatory.

She said it was upsetting that this was still happening as the issue was already raised in 2017 when another same-sex couple was denied by the Beloftebos Wedding Venue.

“This business has been allowed to continue discriminating. This is a business offering public services, this is a legal entity and they are bound by the laws of this country. So, we are outraged.”

Constitutional law expert Pierre de Vos said the policy was against the law: “You cannot say that it is my religion to discriminate against black people, against women, against gay men and lesbians if you have a business.”

He said the law might differ in the case of churches.

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