Helen Zille & Sihle Sikoji

Helen Zille, the Western Cape Premier and leader of the DA, has condemned the LGBT hate crime epidemic in South Africa after visiting the family of a 19-year-old lesbian victim.

Sihle Sikoji, a member of “corrective rape” community support group Luleki Sizwe, was recently stabbed to death in Phillipi in Cape Town following an altercation with a group of men.

Zille said in a statement that she met with Sikoji’s grandmother Nomangesi and mother Ntombizanele on Saturday.

“The attack on Sihle once again highlights the scourge of hate crimes against lesbian women, and LGBT people more broadly, that continues to ravage our communities, leaving devastated families in their wake,” Zille said.

“We must all stand against and seek to eradicate all hate crimes because they are violations of the constitutional rights to life, to dignity and to freedom which every person deserves.”

In a recent interview with the DA’s Parliamentary Leader, Lindiwe Mazibuko, Mambaonline suggested that Zille make a statement by visiting the family of hate crime victims.

Sikoji was murdered on the night of Friday 9 November when she and two friends were confronted by five or more men who verbally abused them and told them.

The confrontation became violent and Sikoji was stabbed in the chest while one of her friends was stabbed in the arm. The third friend escaped the attack and found help to take the women to the hospital.

Sikoji later died in hospital. Police said that they are on the hunt for four men in connection with the murder.

Zille also met with Ndumie Funda, founder of Luleki Sizwe, and praised the organisation for its work in assisting lesbian women.

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