Some groups led a protest in Soweto, South Africa, on Wednesday, calling for the expulsion of foreigners and non-nationals, causing tension in the city.
According to reports, the “Operation Dudula” protest saw violent groups calling for a protest against foreigners – a march that began at 8 a.m. at a hall in Soweto’s Diepkloof area.
Posters were widely distributed throughout the town, urging non-nationals to leave the Soweto area by Wednesday, June 16.
Really unclear what steps the South African authorities are taking in this regard, but police were seen surrounding the protesters, attempting to prevent them from breaking into people’s shops.
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However, a local member of Operation Dudula claimed that they were after criminals such as drug peddlers, cult members, and others.
Other protesters said they wanted “undocumented, immigrant business owners removed from the area.”
Soweto is South Africa’s largest and most influential township, and it is where previous years’ large xenophobic attacks originated.
A Nigerian lawyer based in South Africa confirmed the new protest in Soweto, saying they had been living with a “ominous increase in xenophobic threats and attacks on an annual basis” since 2008.
“This recent incident under discussion is not an isolated incident, but rather one of many ugly manifestations of xenophobia,” he said.
“I must admit that the South African government is doing everything possible to curb and contain it, but many of these incidents are instigated by politicians and the so-called elite in order to gain political mileage and score political points.
“Some of the attacks are motivated by a lack of service delivery and the escalating economic crisis; there are instances of competition between locals and foreigners; and there is also an element of jealousy, as locals observe several foreigners whose businesses are thriving in contrast to their own. In the meantime, these are
Meanwhile, these foreigners had arrived in South Africa with extensive business experience and large sums of money.
“If you look closely at some of the most recent xenophobic attacks, you can see that the locals do not want foreign long haulage drivers to move cross-border goods trailers and trucks in and out of South African borders. Foreign drivers don’t mind being paid less than the government-approved minimum wage, whereas unionized South Africans want the minimum wage and more pay increases.”
The most recent pronounced wave of xenophobic attacks occurred in July 2019, when Mrs. Elizabeth Ndubuisi, Deputy Director-General of the Chartered Insurance Institute of Nigeria, was murdered in her hotel room in South Africa, among other killings and violence.