The Zanu PF thug who performed a citizen’s arrest on a transgendered woman in Zimbabwe for using a women’s toilet is outraged that she has been released.
On 16 January a group of young men – described as Zanu PF youth and led by one Farai Mteliso – took Ricky Nathanson to the police after she used a female bathroom at a Bulawayo hotel.
She was reportedly forced to undergo a physical examination at a local hospital to ascertain if she is biologically male and was charged with “criminal nuisance.”
On Tuesday, Nathanson, 48, who runs a modelling agency, was acquitted by Magistrate Abednico Ndebele because the state failed to prove its case that she had in fact broken any law.
New Zimbabwe reported that Mteliso was angry that Nathanson had been let go by the court.
“The magistrate presides on a case of a man who comes into court wearing a dress, which obviously shows that he is practising homosexuality,” Mteliso said.
“Do you think that if President (Robert) Mugabe was in this court that man would have come out of court?
“Just imagine how many women this man has seen naked by entering ladies toilets. I think he has even seen my wife’s nakedness since I usually go with her to drink at the hotel,” he ranted.
Mteliso was earlier accused of making threats against Nathanson, leading her to flee her home in fear.
GALZ, Zimbabwe’s LGBT rights group, welcomed Nathanson’s acquittal and said that the matter reflected the police’s continued “knee-jerk reactions to cases involving the LGBTI community.”
It urged the police to retrain its officers when it comes to “their attitudes towards human sexuality and gender.”
“This is particularly important in the promotion of a human-rights culture in Zimbabwe at a time when attitudes to gender and sexuality are a significant contributing factor in addressing challenges around HIV,” said the group.
Both her accusers and the Zimbabwe media continue to see Nathanson as a homosexual and not as a transgender woman, with journalists describing her in reports as a “gay man” and insisting on referring to her as a “he.”