Gender activists slam judge

UNIMPRESSED: Mally Simelane and Phumi Mtetwa in Delmas. © Sowetan.
UNIMPRESSED: Mally Simelane and Phumi Mtetwa in Delmas. © Sowetan.

Luzuko Pongoma

Luzuko Pongoma

Gender activists have criticised a judge for ignoring the sexual orientation of brutally murdered Banyana Banyana star when sentencing her killer on Friday.

Delmas circuit court Judge Moses Mavundla sentenced Thato Petros Mphiti to 31 years in prison for murdering soccer star Eudy Simelane. Before sentencing Judge Mavundla said: "I listened to the mother talking about the sexual orientation of the victim and in my view this is not significant."

Phumi Mtetwa of the Lesbian and Gay Equality Project said Mavundla failed to recognise that people were killed because of their sexuality: "By ignoring the sexual orientation he made it look like a random robbery. They knew Eudy was a lesbian."

Mtetwa said that they would try to convince the court to recognise Simelane's sexual orientation when the trial of Mphiti's three co- accused continues on July 29.

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