Zuma hosts meeting on SA's migration policies

2015-04-22 15:24
President Jacob Zuma (GCIS)

President Jacob Zuma (GCIS)

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Pretoria - President Jacob Zuma held a meeting with various representatives from civil society in Pretoria on Wednesday morning to discuss the country's migration policies and the recent spate of xenophobic attacks.

Before the meeting, ministers, trade unionists, businessmen and religious representatives mingled during breakfast at the Sefako Makgatho presidential guesthouse, in a small but socially powerful sea of suits and robes, with a scattering of headscarves and yarmulkes.

As media were allowed in to take photos, Zuma spokesperson Mac Maharaj, who is retiring at the end of April, and who turned 80-years-old on Wednesday, posed for selfies with journalists.

The meeting was held following the xenophobic violence which flared up in parts of KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng, leaving seven people dead and scores injured.

Defence Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula said on Tuesday that the army would be sent into areas where there had been xenophobic attacks.

The presidency said recently that the meeting would be held "to build lasting partnerships with stakeholders in the country to ensure that the shameful attacks on foreign nationals do not recur in the country".

Zuma said at the weekend that, while the meeting would address the concerns of locals on the implementation of the country's migration policies, nothing could justify the loss of life and the looting and destruction of shops owned by foreign nationals.

“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," the president said in a statement.

"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."

Read more on:    mac maharaj  |  jacob zuma  |  pretoria  |  xenophobia

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