Xenophobic attacks ‘cannot be tolerated again’

Onlookers show support for the anti-xenophobia march in Johannesburg CBD in April 2015.

The Ahmed Kathrada Foundation has called for a peaceful resolution to recent xenophobic attacks.

The Ahmed Kathrada Foundation, an organisation that focuses on spreading a message of nonracialism, has called on leaders from all sectors of society to publicly condemn the recent xenophobic incidents and rally their constituencies against anti-foreigner sentiment, Sandton Chronicle reports.

The foundation expressed concern over the attacks that have occurred in the Tshwane and Johannesburg South regions, as well as the overt expressions of xenophobic sentiment.

The foundation’s director, Neeshan Balton, said: “It was ‘deeply worrying’ that in a democratic South Africa, a march against foreigners was being organised.”

Lawyers for Human Rights has called for a boycott of the march. “We echo this call and reiterate that leaders from all sectors of society must do whatever is possible to quell the outpouring of xenophobic sentiment. Furthermore, government must employ all efforts to stem violence, including heightening police presence in xenophobia hotspots,” said Balton.

READ MORE: Zuma appeals for foreigners to be ‘welcomed’, says not all are here illegally

Balton stated “dinner-table” xenophobia must be tackled as well.

“Discriminatory views often find their way, very casually, to the dinner table. By calling out stereotypical generalisations, or pointing to facts, xenophobic arguments can often be countered. Take for example the false notion that foreigners alone are the main perpetrators of crime,” he said.

“South Africans should be championing #NoToXenophobia campaigns, rather than leaving it up to foreign nationals to take up the cause. It is the least that individuals can do to help ensure that progressive ideals remain mainstream in a bid to counter the xenophobic narrative.”

Caxton News Service

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