Black Looks - Including an African LGBTIQ+ Archive

Gender Violence, Queer Politics, Sexual Rights & Citizenship, South Africa

24 yr old lesbian, Noxola Nogwaza found raped & murdered in Gauteng

Today is the 17th anniversary of South Africa’s independence but for Black lesbians there is little to celebrate as today we learn of the rape and murder of yet another young sister. The Constitution debated and formed to protect all South Africans has failed the majority of South Africans. It has shamefully failed the most vulnerable people in the country and in particular young Black lesbians. The body of Noxola Nogwaza was found on Sunday morning. This is just 4 weeks after the body of 20 years old Nokuthula Radebe was discovered and which has not even been reported in the media.  The pain of these brutal attacks grows and my heart goes out to their family and friends.  May both Nogwaza and Nokuthula Rest in Peace

Statement from EPOC and the Coalition of African Lesbians

Ekurhuleni Pride Organizing Committee (EPOC), the key LGBTI organization in the township of Kwa-Thema, Gauteng, South Africa, and the Coalition of African Lesbians (CAL,) condemn the brutal rape and murder, in cold blood, of a member of EPOC. Noxola Nogwaza is believed to have been murdered in the early hours of Sunday, April

The body of Noxolo Nogwaza, a 24 year old lesbian, was found lying in an alley in Kwa-Thema at about 9am on Sunday, April 24 2011. Noxola’s head was completely deformed, her eyes out of the sockets, her brain spilt, teeth scattered all around and face crashed beyond recognition. Witnesses say that an empty beer bottle and a used condom were stack up her genitals. Parts of the rest of her body had been stabbed with glass. A large pavement brick that is believed to have been used to crash her head was found by her side.

Noxola was raped and murdered in a similar manner as that in which another member of EPOC was murdered almost three years ago (April 28, 2008). Eudy Simelane’s body was also found in an open field in Kwa-Thema. It was clear that she had been raped and murdered afterwards, crimes that the perpetrators confessed to. Just last year, a gay man in the same township was attacked by eight men, who attempted to rape him. Luckily, he escaped the vultures. The men, as they attempted to rape him, were heard saying, “We are determined to kill all gay people in this area and we will do it.”

“It is very clear that these rapists are on a mission. We will however not rest until justice prevails. Eudy’s case was not recognized as a hate crime against a lesbian and the same is not done in the cases of many other people who have been raped and/or murdered on the basis of their sexual orientation and gender identity/expression in South Africa. EPOC is determined to get to the bottom of the Noxola case and push for justice. It was definitely a hate crime.” said Ntsupe, Chairperson of EPOC.

“I am so disturbed by this horrific action. It is the responsibility of the South African Government to protect all its citizens. Hate crimes against LGBT people in this country are on the rise and the government should come out openly against these actions. Protection of individuals who are vulnerable because of their sexual orientation and or gender identity is something provided for in the Constitution of South Africa and should be put in practice. As a regional advocacy organization, CAL will work with EPOC and others to ensure that the perpetrators are brought to book.”

EPOC and CAL call on the Tsakane Police Station, where the case has been reported, to carry out a quick and thorough investigation into the murder of Noxolo and deal with the perpetrators accordingly.

Noxola will be laid to rest at a cemetery in Kwa-Thema on Saturday, April 30, 2011. EPOC and CAL call on all your support in this time of grief and horror. Details of the burial will be sent out shortly. Please come and stand with us.


  1. Tporter1685

    I have such hatred for what those men did to her..I know your not suppose to hate but I hope they burn in hell

  2. Sarinmona

    I am deeply distured by this. What a shame. You have to be very careful who you tell your business to. Some men hate you for being gay. They will take your life and not even blink. Some women will roll their eyes at you thinking that you want them. Being gay doesn’t rub off. You can’t catch it. Truth be told gay people are very picky and probably not even look at you, so don’t be scared. The violence must stop. I pray they rise up for this poor young woman. They should find those men and YES publicly do to them what they did to her. Excuse me, I have to go throw up now. I am sick to my stomach.

  3. 3131693

    oh my God!!!! this is just too terrible and horrific. how can any human being do such to another. this deeply cuts my heart. what shall happen to us???

  4. Ben Khumalo Seegelken

    Disgusting crimes and violation of human rights will continue ravaging society as long as only a few stand up and raise their voice in protection of marginalised individuals and minorities: Fathers, mothers, brothers, sisters and friends, teachers and neighbours – each one of us could prevent criminals from intimidating or doing harm to girls and boys, men and women living among us – our sons, daughters, brothers and sisters, friends and colleagues, neighbours and students, teachers and leaders – by making it clear for everybody that we accept and respect them as unconditionally as we do accept and respect ourselves and everybody else. Every family is diverse – it consists of people of different identities and orientation; the community as well. None of the various different identities – lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and others – ought to be marginalised or discriminated against!

  5. Helena

    My heart goes out to you. Men are really INFERIOR TO WOMEN; the more I read abt men´s violence easier I get to thisconclusion. Prison arpound the wrodl are full of MEN, NOT WOMEN!!!

  6. Zanele

    Is this modern day South Africa, what is happening to the world?

  7. Rene

    I am not gay, but I stand in solidarity with women who have to suffer because so-called men have to prove their “masculinity”. True men, do not inflict harm on any human being regardless of her/his sexual orientation. To be so brutally murdered in the way Eudy, Noxolo and other women have been just for being Lesbian is so horrific that I actually cannot find the words. Unless we all, women and men, of all  life orientations stand up and be counted we cannot beat this crime. We have to stand up as FELLOW HUMAN BEINGS! My God, who does this to FELLOW HUMAN BEINGS? I weep as I write this, I weep for all who have suffered and continue to suffer at the hands of cruelty epitomized.