In light of the letter received by the UDM Youth Vanguard from National Council of Provinces Deputy Chair Ms Sylvia E Lucas dated 03 June 2021, responding to our letter dated 10 May 2021 which was requesting a two-day seating of the Youth Parliament 2021 in order to deal with the recent and concerning spike of hate crimes, killing and murder spree of the LGBTQIA+ community.
We are dismayed that Parliament took a decision to postpone Youth Parliament 2021 until such a time the Executive/Ministers give a report on the milestone they have taken since last year’s June and October Youth Parliament sessions. It is now almost a year and there is no comprehensive report from the Executive or Parliament relating to all issues that young people of South Africa raised in that August House.
The UDMYV strongly believes that this exclusive decision to suspend this session was unfair. More especially that young people were denied an opportunity to hold the Executive including Parliament to account on its failure to have compiled a report till this day.
Ms Sylvia Lucas response was and is mum on the issue at hand, an issue that needs urgent attention. The recent spike of killings and murder of the LGBTQIA community needs no postponement, definitely needs a robust debate so we find short term, medium to long term solutions to combat this scourge now.
It is abhorrent that Parliament is going on recess and there has been no debate scheduled to deal with this matter and Youth Parliament has been pushed aside of which its the rightful platform for young people to deal with the issue when our National Assembly is not willing to do so. Every week there are reports of LGBTQIA+ Members who are murdered and there’s no action and not word from those in power.
One of the National Assembly mandates is to be the voice of the people, however they fail to represent human rights equally.
We are dismayed and angered by this move. UDMYV believes that this is subtle homophobia and those in position of power will silence whoever wants to raise their voice in defence of the rights of the LGBTQIA community.
We want to send a strong message to our lawmakers and government and make it clear that we will not be silenced, voices of the Queer bodies will not be silenced. The HATE crimes Bill is seating infront of you and there’s no time line as to when will it be enacted into law to safe guard the persons of the LGBTQIA.
We call on Ms Sylvia Lucas to convene an urgent summit whilst waiting for Youth Parliament in respect of the Spike of killing of our people.
One life lost is too much
LGBTQIA+ have constitutional rights and those rights shall be respected, protected by law and by All.
Mr Yongama Zigebe
UDM Youth Vanguard