Posted by: st-ryker | 2006/11/14

ON NEWS-24... (note the time)

Parly approves gay marriages
2006-11-14 17:32
Cape Town - Parliament has approved the controversial Civil Unions Bill, which provides for same-sex marriage, making South Africa the first African country to do so and one of only a few in the world.
The measure was opposed on Tuesday by almost all opposition parties, bar the Democratic Alliance, which allowed its members a free vote on the issue.

The bill provides for opposite-sex and same-sex couples of 18 years or older to solemnise and register a voluntary union, either by marriage or civil partnership.

Same-sex couples can be married by civil marriage officers and such religious marriage officers who consider these marriages not to fall outside the tenets of their religion.

Home Affairs Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula said South Africa needed to fight and resist all forms of discrimination and prejudice, including homophobia.

The national council of provinces now also needs to approve the bill to meet a Constitutional Court deadline of December 1 to correct what it ruled in December last year was an unconstitutional definition of marriage in the legislation.

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageGay, lesbian and bisexual expert

Hi again St-ryker and thanks for posting this.

The approved Bill is a huge step for us - we will indeed be able to be be married. The only hassle with the new Bill is clause 6, which states : "A marriage officer.... may in writing inform the Minister that he or she objects on the grounds of conscience, religion and belief to solemnising a civil union between persons of the same sex, whereupon that marriage officer shall not be compelled to solemnise such civil union." I have a problem with a state official, paid by taxpayers to serve us, being able to refuse to carry out his or her duties.... this allows for ongoing prejudice and discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation. It will be interesting to see whether the Constitutional Court accepts this clause.

Note that the new Civil Unions Bill does not only cater for same-sex relationships - straight couples can also opt to be married according to this Bill, which is very a positive step.

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Our users say:
Posted by: NatureFreak | 2006/11/15

Can you imagine the headlines when the first gay couple wants to divorce!!

Please people this is not something you take lightly and definitely not something just doing because you are now allowed to!!!!

Reply to NatureFreak
Posted by: DawnFyre | 2006/11/15

I agree- all marriages should only be legal from 21- I had good friends , went to their wedding, she was 20, he just 21. After they got married she started messing around and less than a year later they were divorced. Lets hope that our gay guys and dolls do not follow in the footsteps of their str8 couterparts.

Reply to DawnFyre
Posted by: TTM | 2006/11/15

On Morning Live this morning, they said that the age to get married for same sex marriages without parental consent will be 21......

My niece got married last year (she was 19), her parents took a second bond on their house....8 months later...she is divorced!!!!!

Maybe they should apply that to ALL south africans....

Reply to TTM
Posted by: Confused | 2006/11/14

I was watching the 7 o'clock news and they said 17 LBGT orginizations approved of this draft of the bill. This is good very news. We must just see what the con court says about this draft. I wonder what the triangle project said about it?
Although this is a great victory, I don't think we should rest this issue jet.

We'll have to see if they change the marriage act to include the words "or spouse,", wheter this replaces the marriage act, or wheter the two are going to be intergrated

Reply to Confused
Posted by: gboy | 2006/11/14

what does this mean? does it mean the civil union bill is accepted and gays can form union with same/similar rights to straigths or has the marriage act been changed to include same-sex parterns?


Reply to gboy

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