The ACDP’s Jo Ann Downs
The African Christian Democratic Party (ACDP) has slammed the organisers of Mr. Gay World for “provoking Christians” by holding the event’s concluding ceremony on Easter Sunday.
On Thursday, Karyn Maughan from eNews tweeted comments by the party’s National Chairperson Jo Ann Downs about the international competition that aims to find a global gay ambassador which is underway in Johannesburg.
Downs told Maughan that Christians are “deeply hurt” that Mr. Gay World is being held on Easter Sunday and that the organisers are deliberately trying to “provoke” Christians.
She said that, “homosexuality is one of many sins. On Easter Sunday we don’t expect adulterers to rise up and have a Mr. Adultery competition.”
Downs went on to say that “if homosexuals want to proceed with their agenda, they shouldn’t do it on the holiest day of the Christian calendar.”
She insisted, however, that “there’s no animosity towards Mr. Gay World. It’s not like we’re picketing outside saying ‘die homosexuals’.”
Coenie Kukkuk, Africa Director for Mr. Gay World, told Mambaonline that he was not surprised by the ACDP’s statements and that the party had a long-held anti-gay agenda.
He noted that the ACDP last year blocked a parliamentary motion to congratulate South Africa’s Francois Nel on winning the 2011 Mr. Gay World title in the Philippines. It also opposed the passing of the Civil Union Bill that legalised same-sex marriage in 2006.
Kukkuk quipped that he didn’t usually bother addressing statements by political parties with just three seats in parliament.
Commenting on Twitter, internationally recognised HIV/Aids activist Zackie Achmat described the ACDP’s comments as a “disgrace” and noted that “Sunday is a day of meaning for many”.
“I find ACDP hurtful & offensive” he tweeted.
Mr. Gay World 2012 kicked off early last week with 22 participants from around the world.
On Saturday, the finalists visited the Nkosi’s Haven home for mothers and children living with HIV/Aids, the event’s official charity this year.
The contest culminates in the awarding of the Mr. Gay World 2012 title on Sunday 8 April at Gold Reef City in Johannesburg.
Tickets are available through Computicket.