In a statement from Pretoria, Cabinet spokesperson, Jimmy Manyi, said the government had noted the recurrence of such violence, particularly in Alexandra, north of Johannesburg, where rows over low-cost housing have exacerbated the issue.
Locals accuse foreign nationals of fraudulently acquiring the houses, resulting in xenophobic attacks. Manyi said the government condemned these threats and would not tolerate any form of violence.
“Our government will not be held to ransom by vigilantes and will bring the full might of security and the justice system against those culprits found partnering in these activities,” he said.
Manyi said South Africa’s cabinet had noted the progress of engagements between the government and civil society organisations regarding the matter.
“These engagements are continuing. The Cabinet is, nonetheless, pleased with the presence of officials and security forces who battle to maintain peace and order,” he said.
Among refugee rights groups that have been involved in the engagements is the Zimbabwe Exiles Forum.
“We wish to put it on record that most Zimbabweans staying in Rural Development Programme houses have not obtained them fraudulently, but are paying rent to absentee landlords. It should also be noted that those who actually own the houses are South African citizens originally from Zimbabwe. They obtained citizenship either through their spouses or because they have stayed in SA for a sufficient enough time to qualify,” ZEF excutive director, Gabriel Shumba, said.
A group calling themselves the Alexandra Bonafides gave foreign nationals a week's notice to vacate the RDP houses in Extensions 7 and 10.Post published in: Africa News