PRESS RELEASE

15/04/2015

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

GOVERNMENT CALLS FOR AN END TO THE BLOODSHED IN ETHEKWINI

The KwaZulu-Natal Government and eThekwini Municipality has vowed that Durban will not be brought to its knees by a few violence instigators who have declared war against foreign nationals.

Premier Senzo Mchunu again called on community leaders to help restore peace and reintegrate the displaced foreign nationals back to their communities. 

“Once again, we implore all concerned to cease these violent attacks. Let us work together to find solutions of peaceful coexistence and put an end to these senseless criminal activities,” said Mchunu.

Seventy four arrests have been made to date for offences including murder, public violence, business robbery, theft and possession of firearms and ammunition.

EThekwini Mayor Nxumalo said the attacks on foreigners and looting of foreign-owned shops has led to the death of five people and has far-reaching negative economic implications for the City and South Africa.

“People should not take the law into their own hands but must report these criminals who are tarnishing the image of our beautiful City to police so that the perpetrators can be brought to book,” appealed Nxumalo.

A multi-disciplinary high-level government task team deployed by President Jacob Zuma to address the xenophobic violence led by Mchunu is currently visiting all xenophobia hotspots in the province.

The government delegation including State Security Minister David Mahlobo, Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba, Nxumalo and members of the Provincial Legislature visited Verulam to assess the situation after reports of violence at the Verulam CDB last night. 

Thereafter they will proceed to KwaMashu, Isipingo, Dalton and the Mahatma Ghandhi Road areas where foreign nationals were recently attacked.

Nxumalo said the violence directed at foreign nationals will negate the progress eThekwini has made in positioning Durban as a destination of choice for foreign investors.

“The violence happening in the City also has a negative impact on business in the City more especially the hospitality industry which employs thousands of people, especially the youth,” he added. 

Temporary shelter set up in Isipingo, Chatsworth and Greenwood Park to accommodate the displaced foreign nationals are being monitored and and working with Non-Government Organisations, government has also ensured that the displaced are provided with at least three meals a day, blankets and personal hygiene items.

Government’s primary objective is to ensure that the displaced foreign nationals are safely reintegrated back into the community. 

The National Commissioner of the South African Police Service, General Riah Phiyega, has made available additional resources to KwaZulu-Natal to restore peace and stability. 

All detectives investigating the current violence related cases in the province have been instructed to work closely with the prosecuting authorities to ensure that the cases are thoroughly investigated and the perpetrators of violence brought to book as this will deter others from engaging in such criminal conduct in the future. 

Law enforcement authorities will be out in full force during the march from Curries Fountain to City Hall which will be led by Mchunu and Nxumalo tomorrow, 16/04/2015.

People attending the march are warned not to carry weapons as these will be confiscated.

Government also urges those attending the march not to wear clothing displaying political party colours and symbols including badges, caps and T-shirts, as this is a peace march for all Africans. 

ENDS

Issued by eThekwini Municipality’s Communications Head, Tozi Mthethwa.

For more information contact Gugu Mbonambi on 031 311 4855 or email:gugu.mbonambi@durban.gov.za

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