Sithole’s xenophobic killing should be lesson for SA – Mandela

2015-04-21 15:26

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Mandla Mandela says as Africa mourns the death of Emmanuel Sithole and other victims of the recent xenophobic attacks, South Africans should learn to be more welcoming to foreigners given the history of this country’s freedom fighters being exiled in other countries during struggle days.

“South Africans should embrace all who seek refuge and asylum under international law and conventions in the expectation of safety, security and peace in our land. We should protect them with our very lives and ensure that they receive the support and protection they long for and deserve, said Mandela.

Speaking in his capacity as the Mvezo chief, the eldest grandson of late former president Nelson Mandela said nothing could bring back Sithole but there were lessons to be learnt.

Sithole’s images of his attack were captured by a Sunday Times journalist and sent shock waves around the world as his knife-wielding assailants bayed for his blood in full view of Alexandra township residents.

“There is nothing we can do to bring back Emmanuel Sithole. We can but apologise and express our deepest condolences to his family and the Mozambican people, and contribute to ensuring such brutality does not happen again.

“His killing was not the act of ordinary peace-loving South Africans, many of whom live in Mozambique and contribute to the development of that country and the upliftment of its people, said Mandela.

The Mvezo chief, who is also an ANC member of Parliament, called on South African leaders to work hard to put a stop to the attacks and for the law to take its course and arrest the perpetrators.

“We call on communities and community leaders across the length and breadth of South Africa to leave no stone unturned to put an end to this madness. The life of all human beings is sacred and the callous targeting of foreign nationals is a crime against us all,” he said.

He said the country needed to face its challenges of unemployment, poverty and inequality head on and not be diverted by “random acts of insanity that unfortunately hold the potential of sweeping us up in a maelstrom of mindless violence and the killing of innocents”.

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