WINDHOEK – International University of Management (IUM) founder Dr David Namwandi yesterday expressed shock and disgust at attacks on immigrants in neighbouring South Africa and called on President Hage Geingob in his capacity as the chairperson of SADC to intervene.
Namwandi joined the regional chorus of international condemnation against the xenophobic attacks in Limpopo and KwaZulu-Natal where at least two people were reported to have been killed in a wave of anti-immigrant violence that started about last week in the coastal city of Kwazulu-Natal.
Namwandi said: “I want to express my sense of shock, disgust as we hate the incidences which happened in Kwazulu-Natal, South Africa.”
“The act of treating other Africans in that horrible way can never be condoned by anyone,” said the former education minister, adding that African countries contributed and sacrificed a lot for South Africans to be free and liberated from the repressive apartheid government.
“Africans are not foreigners in Africa. In fact, there were no borders in Africa, these borders were brought by colonisers,” said Namwandi.
He reminded South Africa to be cognizant of the fact that ANC leaders and its military wing Umkhonto we Sizwe, co-founded by Nelson Mandela, operated in other African countries that also hosted its exiled leadership and that made a lot of selfless sacrifices for South Africa.
Meanwhile, South African Minister of International Relations and Cooperation Lindiwe Sisulu also expressed serious concern about the current spate of violence against foreign nationals and the damage to their properties in Kwazulu-Natal.
In remedy, according to News 24, Sisulu has called an urgent meeting of African ambassadors to discuss the matter.
She simultaneously called on law enforcement officers to deal with criminals and those damaging properties, with the full might of the law.
This comes after a graphic video and imagery did the rounds on social media this week wherein protests erupted and foreign nationals were attacked, with police having to intervene in the areas of and surrounding Kenville, Inanda Road and Sea Cow Lake in Durban.
“The shop owners opened fire, fatally wounding a 22-year-old man in the neck and wounding other two victims who were rushed to hospital for medical attention. Later a second victim died in hospital,” Lieutenant Colonel Thulani Zwane told News24 earlier in the week.
On Tuesday night, local residents raided the homes of foreign nationals, forcing them to seek refuge at nearby police stations and mosques.
Sydenham police station housed more than 100 people displaced from their homes.
On Wednesday morning, 20 people sought shelter from a mosque in Crescent Street in Overport, Durban, after they were attacked at Jadhu Place informal settlement in Springfield Park.
Sisulu reiterated the African continent contributed and sacrificed a lot for South Africans to be free and liberated from the apartheid government.
“South African companies and our citizens are welcomed and loved across the continent: here at home, we should do the same, we must embrace our neighbours and fellow Africans,” Sisulu said.
“South Africa has been supported by all African countries and many countries in the world to have a non-permanent seat in the United Nations Security Council; it is currently the Vice-Chairperson of the African Union (AU) and the Chair of the AU in 2020. These responsibilities require that we must welcome and lead in building bridges between nations, particularly in the Southern African Development Community (SADC) and the continent.”
Sisulu said that a strong message against violence, all criminal activities and looting of properties of foreign nationals needs to be sent and that the police and other law- enforcement agencies must act without fear or favour.
She said a meeting to will be convened as soon as possible on how ambassadors and government can work with communities and all stakeholders to support and encourage integration in communities.
The eThekwini municipality and the Malawi High Commission have denied the violence in Durban was xenophobic, saying it was sheer criminality.
The EFF has joined civil organisations in condemning the attacks.
“We reject this as the greatest form of self-hate amongst African South Africans [and] whatever the grievances, nothing justifies hatred-driven violence against African foreign nationals,” said spokesperson Mbuyiseni Ndlozi.
“We call on authorities to take a no compromise, no nonsense and tough action against any xenophobic-driving violence,” said Ndlozi
2019-04-01 08:39:07 20 days ago