Puntland Diaspora Forum condemns in the strongest terms the violence against migrant workers in South Africa. Violent mobs attack the properties and businesses of migrants from a number of countries including Somalia and razed them to then ground after looting them. The claim that the immigrants were taking their jobs is baseless as many of the people attacked were hard working self-employed who were in fact generating employment.
It is not the first time that migrants are targeted in South Africa. For many years, businesses owned by Somalis in small towns in the country were constantly attacked and looted and often burned. Many Somalis lost their lives over the years. This time the attack was happening in major cities such as Johannesburg. Attacking people in a major city in the full glare of the authorities is worrying to the people. It is the responsibility of the government of South Africa to protect the migrants. The condemnation of President Cryil Ramaphosa is welcome, however, concrete action is needed to bring the violence to an end.
The surge in violence against foreigners in a number of South African cities has attracted wider criticism from the governments of Nigeria and Ethiopia as well as the President and politicians of South Africa. We call upon the government of South Africa to put an end to the xenophobic violence. We also call upon the African leaders whose citizens are on the receiving end of this violence to visit the country to give support to their nationals and to urge the government of South Africa to do everything under its power to curb the atrocities.
South Africans should be reminded that the nations whose citizens they are killing and burning have given unlimited moral, political and material assistance during their struggle against apartheid. They should show gratitude by welcoming them instead of harming them.
Puntland Diaspora Forum