In the early hours of April 24, 2011, 24-year-old Noxolo Nogwaza was raped and murdered in South Africa on her way home from a night out with friends, apparently because she was a lesbian. More than a year later, no progress has been made on her case and her killer(s) remain at large.
Nogwaza was also an activist for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) rights as a member of the Ekurhuleni Pride Organizing Committee (EPOC), an organization that aims to empower and inform LGBTI people and to combat hate crimes, victimization and injustice through education and awareness-raising activities. Amnesty International has been working hard on her case for some time now, so its time that we show the same activism and commitment that this woman showed for others like her in South Africa.
Don’t forget that the St. Louis Write-a-Thon is tomorrow! If you don’t want to do these letters on your own, you can join us at Schlafly Bottleworks and write a few in good company.
Please send a letter to:
Lieutenant General Mzwandile Petros
Gauteng Provincial Commissioner
South African Police Service
16 Empire Road
Start your letter: Dear Commissioner
I am writing in concern for NOXOLO NOGWAZA, who was murdered over a year ago. Please ensure that Tsakane police authorities investigate so that those responsible may be brought to justice without further delay. I also urge that you ensure that the activities of Community Policing Forums give particular attention to including LGBTI individuals.
I also recommend that greater resources be allocated to training all police personnel on their legal obligations to provide non-discriminatory and professional services to LGBTI individuals. Every police station should have dedicated officers trained to properly investigate crimes of targeted violence – including on the grounds of sexual orientation,
gender identity or gender expression – in an efficient and unbiased manner.