Both the amaXhosa and Zulu kings have reiterated their dislike for the movie "Inxeba (The Wound)", claiming that initiation is one of "the last rituals" maintained by black people.
Spokesperson for amaXhosa king Nkosi Ndevu alleges that white people have "eroded everything about black culture", and that they "cannot allow them to do the same with initiation schools".
"We felt we were being insulted by the producers of 'Inxeba'. We still challenge the producers of the film – if they continue with this, we will continue to fight with them," he said at a meeting arranged by the Commission for the Promotion and Protection of the Rights of Cultural, Religious and Linguistic Communities (CRL Rights Committee) to discuss the film on Wednesday.
The programme for the day started with a screening of the controversial movie.
Commission for Gender Equality's Mbuyiselo Botha is currently on the podium. #InxebaTheWound— Queenin Masuabi (@Queenin_M) February 14, 2018
Representatives of the Xhosa nation made a grand entrance once proceedings were already underway. The delegation chanted isiXhosa praises, and attendees were expected to stand as spokesperson Nkosi Ndevu entered the venue.
Ndevu spoke about the king's dislike of the movie and called for it to be "banned with immediate effect".
Zulu prince Thulani Zulu also arrived with a delegation clad in traditional attire.
When Zulu took the podium, his delegation walked with him singing and chanting praises as he prepared to speak.
"There are some thing you cannot tell people what is happening, it is secretive in nature – when you expose it it loses its value," Zulu said.
"The success of the culture is because it is not exposed to anybody," he added.
"Inxeba (The Wound)" came under fire from traditional leaders, who believe it misinterprets initiation. Defenders of the film have claimed that homophobia, rather then concern for tradition, is behind the wave of objections, as the film depicts queer love between men facilitating the initiation process.
Ahead of the opening of "Inxeba (The Wound)", the Congress of Traditional Leaders of South Africa (Contralesa) marched on various cinemas across Eastern Cape, resulting in the postponement of screenings at Walmer Park shopping centre in Port Elizabeth and Hemingways Mall in East London.
The appeal tribunal of the South Africa Film and Publication Board (FPB) announced on Wednesday morning that the film had officially been banned from playing at mainstream South African cinemas, and could now only be screened at "designated adult premises".
The film has been bumped up from its 16LS classification to an X18 rating by the FPB, supposedly for "classifiable elements of sex, language, nudity, violence and prejudice".