South Africa 27.1.2018 07:39 am

Migrants’ body fear attacks on foreigners could spread to Pretoria

FILE PICTURE: An unidentified wounded protester walks through violent xenophobic clashes at Reiger park informal settlement on the outskirt of Johannesburg. AFP PHOTO/GIANLUIGI GUERCIA

FILE PICTURE: An unidentified wounded protester walks through violent xenophobic clashes at Reiger park informal settlement on the outskirt of Johannesburg. AFP PHOTO/GIANLUIGI GUERCIA

The ADF said there was growing concern that areas with a concentration of migrants might be the next target.

The African Diaspora Forum (ADF) is worried that attacks on migrants could spread to Pretoria. “The mere fact that you are not a South African by birth puts you in danger,” said Marc Gbaffou, the chairperson of the organisation representing foreigners living in South Africa.

Attacks on foreigners started two weeks ago in Rustenburg, when six buildings believed to be owned by Nigerians and allegedly used as brothels and drug dens were torched.

The ADF said there was growing concern that areas with a concentration of migrants might be the next target.

Gbaffou said the attacks had spread to Mogale City, where a satellite police station in Krugersdorp was set alight and police vehicles stoned during a protest against foreigners.

“A similar thing happened a number of months ago in Rosettenville, where community members went on a rampage to attack migrants they believed were criminals, and that quickly spread to Mamelodi, Atteridgeville and many other places in Gauteng.”

Gbaffou said migrants living in Pretoria had a reason to be concerned.

“They are not only attacking Nigerians, but all foreigners and that’s a cause for concern.”

Gauteng police spokesperson Lt Lungelo Dlamini said there was no imminent threat.

“We are relying on our intelligence about the spread of these attacks to Pretoria but, so far, we have not received anything that suggests a threat.”

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