National 13.9.2016 08:05 am

Gigaba to make final call on US anti-gay pastor’s visit

Pastor Steven Anderson of Faithful Word Baptist Church. PHOTO: Screenshot.

Pastor Steven Anderson of Faithful Word Baptist Church. PHOTO: Screenshot.

Initially, Gigaba said his department would attach ‘serious conditions’ to Anderson’s visit.

Controversial “kill-the-gays” US pastor Steven Anderson is expected to find out today if his “soul-winning mission” to South Africa will continue.

Owing to his homophobic views, there has been uncertainty over Anderson’s planned visit to the country. Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba will on Tuesday announce if the anti-gay pastor will be allowed to enter South Africa.

Initially, the home affairs department said that it would be attaching “serious conditions” to Anderson when he visits. This after the SA Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) petitioned the department to ban Anderson from entering the country.

Anderson, who is widely known for his anti-gay sentiments on social media, is scheduled to preach in Johannesburg on 18 September.

In a statement at the time, Gigaba said the department had considered carefully the letter from the SA Human Rights Commission with 60 000 signatures, and the position of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex (LGBTI) community.

“If it is his intention to visit South Africa again, it would be in his best interest to behave in accordance with our laws. We have a precedent regarding a US citizen on which we acted decisively, for the person to leave the country,” Gigaba said.

“There will be serious conditions attached to this visit; we will not hesitate to deport or charge him for wrongdoing.”

Anderson was in the news recently after he reportedly told congregants at his Arizona-based Faithful Word Baptist Church that there are were fewer paedophiles in this world after the June 12 terror attack at Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida, that left 49 people dead.

“The good news is that there’s 50 less [sic] paedophiles in this world, because, you know, these homosexuals are a bunch of disgusting perverts and paedophiles,” Anderson said in a video published on YouTube.

Last week Anderson claimed that if the department wanted to bar him from visiting South Africa they would have done so already.

But the department said Gigaba would announce his decision on whether to allow Anderson to enter South Africa later on Tuesday.

– African News Agency (ANA)

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