Zuma moves to quell xenophobia

2015-04-20 14:21

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President Jacob Zuma has established an inter-ministerial task team to help quell the attacks on foreign nationals, the presidency said today, confirming the death toll was now standing at seven.

“The ministers have done well in stabilising the situation and in spreading the message that South Africa will not tolerate violence and in promoting peaceful coexistence,” said Zuma.

“However, the challenge of migration requires a long-term solution. In this regard, I have established an inter-ministerial committee to work systematically, looking at all aspects of migration,” he said.

The committee will be chaired by Minister for Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation, Jeff Radebe.

Other members are:

» Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba

» Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs Minister Pravin Gordhan;

» International Relations and Co-operation Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane;

» Defence and Military Veterans Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula;

» Social Development Minister Bathabile Dlamini;

» Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi;

» Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga;

» Police Minister Nathi Nhleko;

» State Security Minister David Mahlobo; and

» Justice and Correctional Services Michael Masutha

This comes after a spate of attacks on foreign nationals in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng.

The presidency said Zuma intended to build lasting partnerships with all parties involved to ensure that the “shameful” attacks on foreigners did not recur in the country.

The engagements would take into account concerns raised by citizens about the implementation of migration policy.

However, none of the grievances justified killing people or the destruction of shops and looting.

“No grievance can ever justify the cold-blooded murder of fellow human beings, the destruction of property or the displacement of hundreds of people including women and small children,” said Zuma.

“Millions of South Africans condemn these atrocious killings and abhor xenophobia and all related intolerances. Together we must work harder to root out violence and hatred in our society.”

According to the presidency seven people have been killed in the last week – three South Africans and four foreign nationals.

On Wednesday Zuma is expected to meet with representatives of faith-based organisations, business, labour, youth, creative industries, women, sports, social development sector and others.

In the week he would also meet with leaders of organisations representing asylum seekers and refugees as well as the media.

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