Soweto residents took to the streets after a foreign national shot and killed a young boy from White City last week. The tragic incident was followed by spiralling violence and looting of foreign nationals’ spaza shops in Soweto townships by residents.
The looting spread to various parts of Gauteng including the former Vaal area, Ekurhuleni and the West Rand. The looting and violence prompted ANC councillors in the City of Joburg to express their concerns about the foreign spaza shops operating in Soweto.
The City of Joburg’s councillor report read: “First and foremost, we convey our heartfelt condolences to friends and families who have lost their loved ones, may God be with you in these difficult times.
“Residents are requested not to allow foreign shop owners back into our communities until the government has resolved all issues pertaining to this matter.”
The report further explained that South Africa is a country with laws which need to be respected and obeyed.
The report further stated that the reason South Africans found themselves in this situation is because law enforcement officials like South African Police Service (SAPS), Johannesburg Metro Police Department (JMPD by-laws), Development Planning (DP), Environmental Health (EH) and Home Affairs (Home Affairs) failed South Africans and that law and order was now a thing of the past.
“Foreign nationals spaza shops owners don’t comply with the by-laws and build without plans and business permits. They sell expired and fake products which are making our people sick if not killing them.
“Foreign national shop owners do not respect labour and immigration laws. Lastly, they do not respect banking and tax laws,” said City of Joburg ANC councillors report.
The report added that all the above issues have a negative impact on South Africa’s economy and they also contribute to unemployment because people who work at companies such as Coke, ABI, Lucky Star, Robertson, Unilever and others are being retrenched as stock is not moving.
It added that foreign-owned shops are selling fake products which are produced in backyard factories which are not subject to the tax laws of this country.
The report continued: “However, we do not condone violence, killings and looting of foreign nationals’ shops. Looting and violence shouldn’t be done in the ANC’s name and we urge people to resolve their differences in as humane a way as possible.
“Every year foreign national shop owners kill a person in the township and the communities fight back, they run away and come back after a few days. We need to find a lasting solution to this problem before it turns into a war,” read the ANC councillors’ report.
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