Brutal murder of Durban gay man leaves LGBTQ+ community living in fear
According to media reports, 34-year-old Sphamandla Khoza from Ntuzuma was stabbed and had his throat slit in a suspected hate crime.
JOHANNESBURG - As South Africa moves from Human Rights Month to celebrate Freedom Day in April, the country’s LGBTQIA+ community says it continues to live in fear following the death of a Durban gay man who was brutally murdered earlier this week.
We need to work hard and afford ourselves the privilege of leaving the township as queer folks. This is because townships continue to be our death traps. There is also a link between township drinking spots and queer murders. Siyaphela#JusticeForSphaHomocentric (@uBabaKaEnzo) April 2, 2021
I still cannot get over how Siphamandla Khoza died. #JusticeForSphaLetlhogonolo (@mx_mokgoroane) April 3, 2021
According to social media reports, the suspects took Khoza’s shoes and left them outside his home.
How do you murder someone and keep their shoes as souvenir, then put the same shoes at the gate where the victim lived on display like a trophy. I need them on the electric chair. JAIL is for people who can be rehabilitated. #JusticeForSpha https://t.co/1WtcCd5kKhOshun of Evangelista (@GodessOshun) April 3, 2021
Police have not yet been able to confirm the number of suspects or the circumstances surrounding the death, but it’s understood that at least one of the suspects has been arrested.
South Africa’s LGBQTIA+ community has taken to Twitter calling for Khoza’s murderers to be brought to book.
Bigotry isnt just a difference of opinion or a personal expression, it is a direct threat to the lives of queer people. Someone felt their homophobia so intensely that they extinguished a life and didnt look back. What is it going to take to get people out of their prejudice? https://t.co/b41L1ZKdFaBussy Riot o (@_theekword) April 1, 2021
Khoza’s death came days after the Durban High Court sentenced Mvuyisi Noguda to 25 years behind bars for fatally stabbing Lindokuhle Cele (23) in February last year.
Cele’s family said despite their tragic loss, they were now at peace knowing that justice has been served.