PEN SA Gravely Concerned About Threats Against Inxeba Cast and Filmmakers
28 Aug 2017
The film, which explores themes of masculinity, tradition and homosexuality, tells the story of Xolani, a caregiver during a Xhosa male initiation ceremony who becomes romantically involved with another caregiver.
Amongst the film’s decriers are AmaXhosa King Mpendulo Zwelonke Sigcawu, who seeks to halt the distribution of the film on the grounds that it violates traditional Xhosa rules surrounding the sacred rite.
Further, those involved in the film have received threats from other sources riddled with homophobia and hate speech. This is a violation of the Constitution of South Africa, which protects both freedom of speech and guards against discrimination based on sexual orientation. It is imperative for a viable democracy that voices and expressions that provoke and stimulate robust discussion, debate and disagreement are not silenced or curtailed and that crucially, the full constitutional rights of LGBTQI community are upheld.
PEN SA urges all those citizens and civic organisations dedicated to upholding the constitution to join us in condemning this kind of violent speech and calls upon Mr Nathi Mthethwa, the Minister of Arts and Culture, to prevail upon his Cabinet colleagues in the Security Cluster to take action and condemn the threats voiced against Inxeba and members of the cast.