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Sex Education’s Ncuti Gatwa says he identifies as queer

"I had never met another queer Rwandan person before. I thought I was the only one in the world"

By Alastair James

Ncuti Gatwa
Ncuti Gatwa (Image: BBC)

Sex Education, Barbie, and Doctor Who star Ncuti Gatwa has identified himself as queer in a brand new interview.

The actor, 30, who memorably burst onto our screens as the joyous and effervescent Eric Effiong in Netflix’s Sex Education, has previously avoided publicly defining his sexuality, understandably opting for privacy instead.

However, in a recent interview with Elle UK, Gatwa gave the clearest indication yet that he is part of the LGBTQ community.

“I had never met another queer Rwandan person before” – Ncuti Gatwa

He recounted being at Manchester Pride a few years ago, “going through the streets with all my boys, shaking my cha-chas, living it up.”

It was then he saw a woman who looked like his aunt, who he added he knew instantly was from Rwanda. Gatwa was born in Kigali, Rwanda.

After the two got to talking he asked the woman why she was at Manchester Pride admitting, “It just blew my mind that she was there.”

Getting emotional, Gatwa continued: “We were holding hands, and she said to me, ‘I don’t really know why I’m here. I’m just here.’

“I told her, ‘Honey, you don’t need to know. You absolutely. Do not. Need. To. Know. You’re here. Be proud of who you are.’ I had never met another queer Rwandan person before. I thought I was the only one in the world.”

Despite speculation since his Sex Education debut, Gatwa has avoided labelling his sexuality in public in any way.

Speaking to Vogue earlier this year Gatwa explained: “It’s a safety and mental health thing.”

Advocating for privacy Gatwa also said: “I also believe that everyone is on their own journey, and it’s important that no one feels an obligation to others in relation to what’s happening to them internally.”

Ncuti Gatwa is leaving Sex Education, presumably for Doctor Who (Image: BBC)
Ncuti Gatwa in Doctor Who (Image: BBC)

Fans of Gatwa will see him return as Eric in Sex Education’s fourth and final series. In February the actor announced he was leaving the show.

After Sex Education airs on 21 September Gatwa will next be seen as the titular time-lord in Doctor Who.

The 60th anniversary episodes will air in November 2023 and Gatwa’s episodes will arrive over Christmas 2023.

Yasmin Finney, Neil Patrick-Harris, Jonathan Groff, and Jinkx Monsoon, who are all LGBTQ, will join Gatwa.

We love to see it!