Mr Gay World authorities have taken extraordinary action and moved the venue for next year’s competition away from Hong Kong and moved it back to this year’s host country South Africa.
In a statement released by the Mr Gay World body, the clampdown by the Chinese authorities on LGBTQ affirming events and campaigns has been listed as the reason for the move.
It is suggested the local hosting company could not proceed with the event in May next year due to these issues.
Hong Kong had also been chosen to host the Gay Games in 2020, at this stage there has been no word as to whether the government changes will affect this event.
Speaking at the original announcement for Mr Gay World 2019, Charles Sun, President of Yunqiaoshang, the local Hong Kong organizing committee was positive regarding the Government’s willingness to allow the event to happen.
“We were obviously quite excited at the news that Mr Gay World has chosen us as the host city,” said Charles Sun back in June.
“We have many challenges in our country, especially when it comes to LGBTQ+ rights. But we are hoping that our government will see the financial benefits events like these have on our economy.
President of Mr Gay World Eric Butter said he was disappointed with the situation in Hong Kong.
“The safety of our delegates and their families is of utmost importance,” said Butter.
“There is always a silver lining. I’m pleased that we will once again work with South Africa and their supporting LGBTQ community. This time we are going to Cape Town!”
This will be the fourth time South Africa has hosted Mr Gay World and the second time in Cape Town the last back in 2015.
Speaking about the announcement, current Mr Gay World Jordan Bruno said he was upset with the news but excited about returning to South Africa.
“I’m disappointed in the Chinese authorities for being unwilling to celebrate and uphold LGBTQ equality, but their stance demonstrates why Mr Gay World is still such a relevant and important competition,” Bruno said.
“I’m really looking forward to returning to South Africa. The spirit and inclusion of the country are strongly reflected in the values of Mr Gay World, and I can’t help but feel it is the perfect country to once again host the competition.”
Mr Gay World 2019 in Cape Town will place from 28 April to 4 May 2019.