Eight local leaders speak out against the violence and destruction in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng.
Stay calm and be vigilant
Like most South Africans, I have been deeply disturbed by the destruction that is happening in other parts of the country. At the end of the day, a lot of people are going to lose their jobs. They are not going to be able to get food for their families.
I understand that the start of the problem was what has happened to the former president of the country, it seems to me that now criminals have taken over. I’m glad that we have not yet experienced that in our town however, we need to be vigilant – we need to make sure that such scenes don’t happen in our town. Our economy is very fragile: if that happened it would kill the economy of this town.
For that reason, I would like to call on all leaders – political, religious, business – to really come together, all of us, with one voice, and ask for peace and calm.
We are going to overcome these challenges. Our government, and all those who are involved, are able to talk to each other to make sure peace returns. I’m making this call because I know that it will be very difficult to rebuild and economy such as ours. It only takes the head of a matchstick to destroy a while forest.
I want to ask people not to spread fake news, or make inflammatory statements on social media.
There are individuals among us waiting for the opportunity to loot. Let’s remain calm, but also vigilant.
Makana Mayor, Mzukisi Mpahlwa
Cooperate with law enforcement
The Democratic Alliance calls on all residents of Makana to remain calm in the face of the unrest and violence in other parts of the country. At this time, we need to cooperate with law enforcement officials and work together to quell any form of violence, looting and incitement – especially that which seeks to divide us. The DA remains committed to building a better South Africa for all.
Kevin Mileham, MP
We will never support thugs
As Samwu in Pinky Ntsangani Region and Makana Local Municipality we say No to looting and destroying our infrastructure that belongs to the community. We will never support thugs and hooligans that destroy our country. Let’s unite and protect what belongs to us. Amandlaaaa
- Wandile Duruwe, Regional Secretary, South African Municipal Workers Union
Bring our community together
On behalf of Makana Residents’ Association I express sympathy for the residents and businesses who have had livelihoods and in some cases lives, destroyed by the senseless destruction of property and looting, particularly in KZN and Gauteng. Fanned by a few individuals with self-interest who have manipulated and incited people to destroy their very own neighbourhoods and those of their neighbours. This is a tragedy. It is with great relief and gratitude that we have not seen similar behaviour in the Eastern Cape and particularly here in Makana where the failings of our municipality have created enough destruction that we could not bear more.
I hope that we can use this situation to bring our community together with renewed, positive energy and appreciate that we are all connected and rely on each other.
I have been contacted by at least one business who would like to give to some of those suffering from food insecurity as a positive gesture and in appreciation for the calm we have experienced here this week, despite potential provocation. This along with a donation from Oxfam will enable us to deliver food to 24 Community Kitchens next week. It would be fantastic if other businesses could follow suit – every R4 we receive is another meal and will potentially be matched by Oxfam in the future.
Let’s stand firmly, together and say NO to vandalism and violence of any kind here in Makana and show the country and the world that this is not acceptable and that our community will not be manipulated to self destruct.
- Sally Price-Smith, Makana Residents Association
No to self-inflicted pain
The space for looting is for the likes of Ace Magashule and the Jacob Zumas of this world. They are unwilling to challenge the status quo and deliver us to freedom. Their space of accumulation is tenders, privatisation and public assets. They have milked dry Eskom, Transnet, South African Airways (SAA) and all other State Owned Enterprise (SOEs).
Because they have no other space, they are now fighting openly: each faction of the ruling elite wants to control the state.
We must not loot, we must not get involved in their open fight, on who must steal from us, who must oppress us.
We go to bed on a hungry stomach because of the same political parties and politicians. Their families and friends are filthy rich. We must not fight for Zuma or any other politician for that matter. We must fight their corruption. We must fight their incompetency. We must fight their greed. We must be organised.
We must reject looting. We must reject politicians. We must reject political parties. We must reject capitalism. We must reject tribalism.
- Unemployed People’s Movement
Resist the temptation of anarchy
When we burn property and close roads, we will suffer. We will not be able to send our children to school; we will not be able to send our sick to hospitals because there will be nothing there; our stores will be empty because there will be no food.
I am asking all Ethiopians, the Christian community and other faiths, to resist the temptation to get involved in this anarchy.
I’m appealing to mothers, fathers, children, do not destroy what we have because that’s going to haunt us later on. I am begging you, for your own sakes.
The people of KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng have suffered. We don’t want to suffer now under the pretext that people are fighting for the return of Zuma.
This is not acceptable – we are killing our country. We have to work closer with the police and all the other forces that our trying to protect our people.
How I wish that God can continue protecting South Africa and bless her people. As South Africans, we have won a number of wars – and we will win this war against anarchy.
- Archbishop Nkosinathi Ngesi, Ethiopian Episcopal Church (The EEC has 2 million members nationally, 100 000 of whom are in KZN)
We need to find ways in which we can help our neighbor’s rebuild, be that through prayers, solidarity, investment or financial support.
At the same time, we must be cognisant of the cause of this tragedy and guard against such actions in the future.
- Richard Gaybba, Chairperson Grahamstown Business Forum
NAFCOC Condemns in the strongest terms, the treasonous acts of lawlessness, anarchy and reckless looting of businesses and destruction of people’s economic infrastructure.
National African Federated Chamber of Commerce and Industry (NAFCOC), together with all its affiliates and associates is shocked by the scale of barbaric and senseless looting of businesses and the destruction of the economic infrastructure and jobs for our people in various towns and townships. We strongly condemn these acts and call upon government and the peace loving communities to hunt and stop the perpetrators and the masterminds behind these treasonous acts. This is pure criminal and damages our investment image that was negatively affected by the downgrading and Covid-19 already.
NAFCOC directs all our structures and members as well as communities to dissociate themselves from this economic sabotage and urge all our communities to refrain from these acts of criminality.
We also welcome government’s efforts under very difficult conditions in stabilizing and restoring order in our business and industrial centres. Arsonists, anarchists, criminals and perpetrators must be arrested and convicted. These well orchestrated and planned acts are literally aimed at making our communities more poorer, more unemployed and add more to the inequalities within our country.
The gains of our democracy are been thrown out of the window by the
merciless ring leaders that are behind this rampant criminality taking place in various malls and informal trading places.
These massive looting and rampage are tragically happening during a time where the country is dealing with a deadly pandemic and undermining the vaccination process aimed at saving lives of our people. These exposes our youth and communities to the fatal coronavirus and harsh unemployment conditions as well as food security.
We call upon our members and the communities to liaise with their municipalities, community policing for a and the SAPS in defence of our businesses and infrastructure. NAFCOC support the rule of law and the constitutional democracy brought about by our forebearers. Let us collaborate with all other leaders of civil society to identify and expose all these perpetrators and criminals within our areas.
We distance ourselves from the lootings and support the economic recovery plans driven by our government under the leadership of State President Ramaphosa. NAFCOC will communicate with government and in particular the Ministry of Small Business Development to find further solutions and assistance regarding the crisis affecting the SMMEs and informal sector caused by this massive lootings. We encourage all our members and associates to assist the law enforcement agencies and report all acts of criminality, infiltration and economic sabotage. We are further in support of
the economic recovery plans and initiatives by the government.
- Statement from National African Federated Chamber of Commerce and Industry, provided by Nafcoc provincial chairperson Ali Adam.