Five buses take more than 220 foreign nationals home after Katlehong violence

12 September 2019 - 18:17 By Ernest Mabuza
Police arrest men who were looting shops in Katlehong.
Police arrest men who were looting shops in Katlehong.
Image: Alon Skuy

About 221 Zimbabweans and Mozambicans caught up in violence in Katlehong last week left for their countries of origin on Thursday.

They were being housed at two shelters set up by the City of Ekurhuleni in Katlehong.

The foreign nationals fled to the shelters following a spate of attacks against businesses owned mainly by foreign nationals in Pretoria, Johannesburg and Ekurhuleni earlier this month.

At least 10 people were killed during these attacks and police have arrested over 400 people for incidents related to the attacks.

Listen to the latest episode of Sunday Times Politics Weekly

Self-righteous Hlaudi & xenophobic politicians

For more episodes, click here.

Subscribe: | Spotify | Apple Podcast | Pocket Casts |

Ekurhuleni spokesperson Nhlanhla Cebekhulu said 96 Zimbabwean nationals left Tsholo Hall in Katlehong on Thursday morning on two buses.

Cebekhulu said 125 Mozambican nationals left on Thursday afternoon on three buses from DH Williams Hall, also situated in Katlehong.

"The mortal remains of Mr Isaac Sithole from Zimbabwe, who lost his life during the attacks at Mandela Park informal settlement in Katlehong were also repatriated," Cebekhulu said.

Ekurhuleni council speaker Patricia Kumalo officiated over a prayer service to send Sithole home.

During the service, Kumalo urged residents of Ekurhuleni to denounce attacks on foreign nationals. She added that the city would continue working with the relevant departments and embassies and consulates of different countries to curb the attacks.

Cebekhulu said the city, in addition to providing humanitarian services to the displaced, worked in collaboration with non-governmental organisations, faith-based organisations and relevant government departments to ensure safe repatriation of the displaced persons who wished to return to their counties of origin.

The respective consulates carried the costs for repatriation. Cebekhulu said foreign nationals who wished to remain would be reintegrated into local communities after the necessary consultations were done with affected communities.