LGBTIQ+ Billboard Defaced In Zimbabwe 24 Hours After Being Erected: GALZ Fumes

The Gays and Lesbians of Zimbabwe (GALZ), an organisation representing LGBTIQ+ people in Zimbabwe, has condemned the destruction of a billboard in Bulawayo, barely 24 hours after it was erected.

The billboard, which had the message “Umuntu, Ngumuntu (a human being is a human being). Dignity, Rights and Respect for all Zimbabweans”, was erected along Plumtree Road in Bulawayo. The erection of the billboard was celebrated by some on social media as a step in the right direction towards respecting all human rights.

However, barely 24 hours later, the people who had celebrated the billboard revealed that it had been vandalised. Some as yet unidentified people tore down parts of the billboard and scribbled graffiti on it.

The vandalisation of the billboard was condemned by GALZ, who said they will continue fighting for the rights of every single person in the country, even in the face of hate.
LGBTIQ+ Billboard Defaced In Zimbabwe 24 Hours After Being Erected: GALZ Fumes
LGBTIQ+ Billboard Defaced In Zimbabwe 24 Hours After Being Erected: GALZ Fumes

In a statement, GALZ said.

On Tuesday, 26 October, GALZ received reports of the defacing of a billboard along Plumtree Road in Bulawayo.

The Billboard with the Inscription: “Umuntu, Ngumuntu Dignity, Rights and Respect for all Zimbabweans” was reported vandalised with graffiti inscribed on it, “2023”.

GALZ holds in contempt any persons resorting to primitive acts of violence when putting across their point of view.

GALZ’s messaging represents strong advances in the battle for freedom of expression in Zimbabwe.

The vandalism is a stark reminder of the culture of hate, intolerance and impunity which still affects sections of Zimbabwean society.

GALZ does not condone any acts of violence and this act only reaffirms our belief that the message has been received and it further emboldens our quest to keep pushing boundaries and expressing ourselves in ways that will contribute to ending a culture of hate, intolerance and impunity in Zimbabwe.

We condemn all acts of violence and we implore the Police to deal with all proponents of violence according to the laws of the land without fear or favour.
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