Ricochet News

‘Nelson Mandela Bay celebrating Pride Month’

Jun 27, 2018
‘Nelson Mandela Bay celebrating Pride Month’

The Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality on Wednesday said that it is proud to be flying one of the world's largest Pride flags on the Donkin Hill, in its central business district in Port Elizabeth.

"The flag flies beneath the world's largest South African flag, creating a truly awesome display," said Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality Mayoral Committee Member for Corporate Services, Councillor Annette Lovemore.

"June is celebrated internationally as Pride month. Many of the great cities of the world have, for some years, been vocally and visibly supporting Pride. Pride flags fly at government institutions in major cities, from Toronto to Dublin to Istanbul to Moscow."

She said that this year, Nelson Mandela Bay officially adds its voice to governments committing, firstly, to recognizing the LGBTQ community, and most importantly, to upholding the rights of the LGBTQ community.

"It is worth noting that the Tshwane government displayed the Pride flag outside its city hall on Human Rights Day earlier this year.

"We acknowledge that the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Transsexual, Intersex, Queer, Questioning, Two Spirited communities and Allies (LGBTTIQQ2SA) often feel understandably sidelined. We acknowledge, too, that open and often vicious prejudice is still displayed towards members of these communities," Lovemore added.

"It is important for the Nelson Mandela Bay government to live up to its promise of freedom and fairness for all its diverse communities. The city government's brand promise of One City, One Future speaks of inclusivity - of all communities of the Metro forming integral and important parts of the City whole."

She said that the LGBTQ community is not seeking additional rights. It certainly is entitled however, and always, to enjoy precisely the same rights as every other South African.

"The same Constitution, and Bill of Rights, applies to every individual and every community.

"The LGBTQ community has achieved much over the past number of years. Same-sex couples may now marry lawfully, and may experience the joys of parenthood. For many, just the opportunity to be openly gay is a recent development," Lovemore described.

"Our city pays tribute to those who sacrificed much to fight bravely for these rights (which are taken for granted by most other communities).

"The task of the city is to provide an institution that will always strive to uphold the rights of all of its communities. Today, as the colourful Pride flag flies on the Donkin, we make that commitment, particularly to our LGBTQ community."