Photo: Shaun-Robert Weldon

The ‘gay flag of South Africa’ was flown high at this past weekend’s London Pride parade, which drew around a million people to the celebrations, under the theme ‘Carnival of Love’.

According to P2-ink, the team behind the flag, the colourful standard – which has been closely aligned to the South African ‘corrective rape’ activist group Luleki Sizwe – had a visible and significant presence at the festival.

Drag queens, lesbians, ‘muscle marys’ and even the London police were seen hoisting the flag.

“I spoke to a lot of people about the flag and your cause of corrective rape and uniting gay South Africans across the races, cultures and social divides… there was definitely a lot of interest,” commented Shaun-Robert Weldon, a South African expat living in London.

The South African gay flag was launched in December 2010

Gill Rimmer, a transport planner who plays for lesbian football team London Lesbian Kickabouts, said a rise in homophobic attacks in the British capital had increased the importance of Pride.

“Living in London I don’t feel persecuted on a daily basis, but I don’t think my experience would be the same if I lived in other parts of the country,” she said.

“London Pride is not just for Londoners so it’s important for people living outside London to be able to come here and celebrate with like-minded people.”

As crowds gathered in Trafalgar Square, human rights campaigner Peter Tatchell, who had carried a placard satirising right-wing BNP leader Nick Griffin in the parade, took to the stage.

He criticised London politicians, including Mayor Boris Johnson, for failing to attend the event.

After the speeches it was time to celebrate; families, gay couples, straight couples and groups of people old and young danced to live music.

The South African gay flag was launched in December last year to vigorous debate about its role and purpose.

Get the Mamba Newsletter

Latest Comments
  1. Leon
    Reply -
  2. Jose
    Reply -
  3. Siphiwe
    Reply -

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Send this to a friend