WRAP | Looting cost KZN economy R20bn and probably 150,000 jobs: presidency

20 July 2021 - 06:10 By TimesLIVE
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Members of a fire crew work at a warehouse which was burned during days of looting following the imprisonment of former South African President Jacob Zuma, in Durban, South Africa, July 17, 2021.
Members of a fire crew work at a warehouse which was burned during days of looting following the imprisonment of former South African President Jacob Zuma, in Durban, South Africa, July 17, 2021.
Image: REUTERS/Rogan Ward

July 20 2021 - 21:45

Shell and BP refineries to resume operations after unrest shutdown

Shell and BP South African Petroleum Refineries (Sapref) is preparing to reopen following a temporary shutdown as a result of recent violent protests and looting in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng.

“Sapref made the decision to safely shut down the refinery when key materials to continue running the facility could not be delivered due to supply chain disruptions caused by the civil unrest,” the company said in a statement.

July 20 2021 - 20:00

Looting cost KZN economy R20bn and probably 150,000 jobs: presidency

The violent protests and looting that broke out in the wake of former president Jacob Zuma's incarceration has cost the KwaZulu-Natal economy R20bn.

After Zuma's arrest earlier this month, his supporters began taking to the streets. This rampage — which included damaged property, setting alight factories and trucks and looting — spiralled into what government has since labelled a “failed insurgency”.

The protests moved to Gauteng, following a similar trend.

July 20 2021 - 19:33

Ramaphosa meets business sector to discuss security, rebuilding economy

In rebuilding SA after the devastating riots, President Cyril Ramaphosa has told the business sector that he will prioritise restoring and maintaining stability, securing essential supplies, providing relief and accelerating inclusive recovery.

“There is virtually no part of the economy that has not been affected by the violence, and there is probably no part of the country that will not feel the effects in some form or another because of the way our supply chains work,” said Ramaphosa on Tuesday evening.

The president was speaking to 90 CEOs and business leaders who have been affected by last week’s civil unrest, largely in Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal.

July 20 2021 - 19:30

Durban consumers cry foul over food prices — but was it profiteering?

“Tomatoes selling for R200 a pocket, toilet paper R180 for a six-pack, baby formula at R180 a tin.”

Chatsworth resident “Priya” is among many Durbanites accusing their local grocery stores of profiteering from the chronic food shortages arising from the mass looting of grocery stores and their distribution centres last week.

“We are in a life and death situation with the food shortage,” she told TimesLIVE. “Price hikes at our small local stores in Chatsworth are shocking.”


July  20 2021 - 18:41

Julius Malema joins 'insurrection' fray that has ANC split down the middle

EFF leader Julius Malema has joined the fray about the characterisation of last week's looting spree and violent protests that rocked Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal.

There has been a raging debate about whether or not it was correct to brand last week's events as an "insurrection".

The debate took a turn at the weekend when defence minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula on Sunday contradicted President Cyril Ramaphosa, saying there was "no evidence of insurrection".

July 20 2021 - 18:22

KZN government says state of disaster must be declared in unrest-hit areas

The provincial government has called for a state of disaster to be declared in parts of KwaZulu-Natal, after civil unrest and looting in the province.

Sipho Hlomuka, co-operative governance and traditional affairs (Cogta) MEC, made the announcement during a governmental visit to the midlands towns of Bulwer and Donnybrook on Tuesday, which did not escape the wrath of looters.

The delegation, led by Cogta minister Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, included senior officials from the national and provincial departments and the Disaster Management Centre.

July 20 2021 - 16:39

Workshops urged not to fit tyres without proof of purchase after looting

The Tyre Equipment Parts Association (Tepa) has urged tyre dealers and workshops to refuse to fit tyres without a valid proof of purchase.

This comes after warehouses and dealers were looted of tyres during violent protests in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng.

Hedley Judd, the national director of Tepa, said stock that was looted was now doing the rounds in the marketplace.

July 20 2021 - 16:32

WATCH LIVE | Acting minister Ntshavheni on rebuilding economy after looting

July 20 2021 - 15:57

Bheki Cele denies police received intelligence before unrest and looting

Police minister Bheki Cele has denied receiving intelligence before the violent uprisings in parts of KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng last week.

This contradicts repeated assertions by his state security colleague Ayanda Dlodlo, who told journalists last week that intelligence structures had been hard at work feeding the police information for them to respond to planned events that formed part of the unrest.

The violence, which started in KwaZulu-Natal and spread north, was triggered by the recent imprisonment of former president Jacob Zuma.

July 20 2021 - 15:32

Armed men demand security contract from owners of looted Umlazi mall

In the same week the Philani Valley Mall in Umlazi, south of Durban, was looted and vandalised, a group of armed men claiming to belong to a local business forum demanded the owners award them a security contract to protect the property.

Gary Gould, a shareholder of the mall — as well as that of Dube Village Mall in Inanda, north of Durban, which was also vandalised by looters last week — told TimesLIVE on Tuesday that so-called business forum members now posed another threat.

“One forum arrived at Philani with machine guns at the weekend. The community was helping us clean the centre and they just chased everybody off site. The word I got initially was that they were taking over the property and claiming it as theirs.”

July 20 2021 - 12:00

‘It is not encouraging looting': Duduzane Zuma responds to criticism over his ‘loot responsibly’ advice

Former president Jacob Zuma's son Duduzane has denied instigating unrest in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng, saying what he said in a viral video last week was taken out of context.

The controversial businessman came under fire for telling protesters and looters to do so “carefully and responsibly”. The 12-minute-long video was shared on Instagram. 

Speaking to Newzroom Afrika on Monday, Duduzane said those condemning his view should listen to the rest of the video clip. He said the video was recorded about four days into the demonstrations and sought to clarify that he had not instigated the unrest. 

The incarceration of the former president triggered violent protests and demands for his release by supporters in KZN. The unrest later spread to Gauteng. 

“It is definitely not encouraging looting,” said Duduzane. 

July 20 2021 - 11:05

‘Some of the looters were regulars at my pub. I feel betrayed’

The opening of Dragon Lounge pub in Stanger, Durban, was Wayne Sukhu’s proudest moment. But after a cleanup operation with the help of his friends at the weekend, he is not sure it will ever open again. 

The business had been growing before the looting started, he said.

“I have lost everything. What they couldn’t take, they broke. No businesses survived in our plaza. They made sure they destroyed the place. They couldn’t carry the big fridges so they smashed and destroyed them.

“We take business loans and risks to start a business. I don’t have insurance. I was hoping to grow first.”

The lockdown made things difficult though.

July 20 2021 - 09:55

KZN mall takes flak for thanking Cele and police for protection during unrest, without acknowledging public

A Pietermaritzburg shopping centre has apologised to its customers after it took flak for thanking the police for “their support” when unrest swept through the KwaZulu-Natal capital. 

Liberty Midlands Mall posted a photograph of police minister Bheki Cele at the mall on Monday on Facebook.

“Liberty Midlands Mall would like to sincerely thank the SA Police Service for their support during the unrest in KwaZulu-Natal last week. Photographed is SA minister of police Bheki Cele during his on-site visit to the mall, together with the Liberty Midlands Mall management team,” read the caption.

July 20 2021 - 09:33

So what happens to the looted goods now? Here are 3 things we know

After a week of violent unrest and looting in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng, police have recovered thousands of rand worth of items stolen from warehouses and retail stores. 

On Monday, police followed up on tip-offs from community members in both provinces to recover thousands of suspected stolen goods.

But what happens to the 40-inch flat-screen TVs and fancy couches now?

Here are three things we know so far about the recovered goods.

July 20 2021 - 07:30

Mzansi reacts to former Ukhozi FM presenter Ngizwe Mchunu handing himself over to authorities

There have been mixed reactions on social media to the arrest of former Ukhozi FM personality Ngizwe Mchunu. 

Mchunu, a staunch supporter of Jacob Zuma, left police headquarters in Durban in handcuffs on Monday and is expected to face charges in Gauteng.

According to TimesLIVE, his lawyers and the police could not confirm what charges he will face. He told his social media followers on Saturday that he would hand himself over in connection with allegedly instigating unrest in KwaZulu-Natal since the arrest of the former president.

July 20 2021 - 06:15

Durban’s frail and elderly go hungry after looting and violence

While thousands of panicked residents queued for hours to secure basic essentials in the wake of looting, for Durban’s elderly and frail the prospect of replenishing supplies has been dismal.

The dire situation prompted urgent appeals from old-age homes for donations of tea, milk, bread, pasta and eggs to tide them over for a few days.

Femada Shamam, CEO of The Association for the Aged (Tafta), which houses about 1,500 pensioners in 13 residences across Durban, said the possibility of food insecurity invoked deep concern and stress among their residents and staff.

“The unrest that we have seen in Durban and surrounding areas has severely impacted on the supply chain of food that is accessible to our residents.

July 20 2021 - 06:00

How a woman’s quest to stay abreast proved best for moms affected by looting

When 28-year-old Rialda de Vaal was unable to breastfeed her premature baby girl, she froze the milk, thinking someone might need it one day.

Last week, as parts of KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng went up in flames, the Klerksdorp mother of three — aged six months, four and five — became a saving grace for at least eight women battling to get milk for their little ones. They responded to a Facebook post by De Vaal.

“I have had a few mothers from KZN and Gauteng contacting me in desperate need of milk, as in some shops there’s no formula available,” she said.

This week she will send 12 litres of milk to two women in Johannesburg.

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