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Africa News of Friday, 5 November 2021

Source: www.ghanaweb.com

How Zimbabwe clergy forced South Africa gay TV star to cancel visit

South Africa gay TV star Somizi Mhlongo South Africa gay TV star Somizi Mhlongo

A protest by the clergy in Zimbabwe has forced a South African TV star who is gay to cancel his engagement in the neighbouring country.

The Apostolic Christian Council of Zimbabwe had written to the government arguing that the presence of Somizi Mhlongo in the country would be a grave violation to its members.

The Council is a coalition of over 600 Christian groups, appealed to the government that given that "Zimbabwe doesn't tolerate homosexuality," there was no reason his highly publicised visit should be countenanced.

"Spiritually we would have disturbed a lot, and physically we would have openly accepted homosexuality in Zimbabwe hence affecting our children," the group said.

Mhlongo, 48, who is an actor and media personality announced the cancellation of his gig in Zimbabwe via his instagram page. "Bye bye ZA (Zimbabwe) Hello NA (Namibia)," he titled a video post.

He was expected in Zimbabwe for the reopening of a restaurant in the capital Harare.

His message indicates that he has instead chosen to attend to an appointment in Namibia instead.

According to reports, Mhlongo, a one-time judge on the Rainbow Nation's version of American Idol, has stressed that despite his disappointment, he will not "stop speaking on behalf of the voiceless."

"If it means you not wanting me being me, authentically me, keep it, keep your space, keep your country, I don't want to be there anyway," he said in the six-minute video.