Foreigners ask the UN to help them leave SA – report

Foreigners ask the UN to help them leave SA – report

Foreign nationals try to save their belongings after their shacks were set alight by alleged looters at Marabastad, near the Pretoria Central Business District (CBD) in Pretoria, South Africa on September 2, 2019, during widespread attacks on foreign nationals and looting of their shops. (Photo by Phill Magakoe / AFP)

A Tanzanian woman says xenophobia has become so bad it has made living in the country difficult.

Foreigners have reportedly sought help from the United Nations (UN) High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) with leaving South Africa.

TimesLive reports that on Tuesday foreigners were at the UNHCR’s offices attempting to convince officials there that they needed help with safely leaving the allegedly xenophobic country.

It was reported that a crowd had gathered outside the offices on Wednesday, with some among them saying they would not leave until they have been helped by the UN.

The publication quoted a Tanzanian woman saying xenophobia in South Africa had become so bad it made living in the country difficult.

“Now we have to go home.”

A man from Burundi told the publication they felt let down by the UN, which had not protected them during xenophobic violence and had also failed to ensure they had the necessary documents to lead productive lives in South Africa.

The man was quoted as saying foreigners have been forgotten and “are nothing to anyone”.

The UNHCR and home affairs had not commented at the time of publication.

Meanwhile, President Cyril Ramaphosa said in his second newsletter on Monday that the recent xenophobic violence had challenged the country’s efforts to build stronger ties with other countries on the continent.

“Fuelled by misinformation spread on social media, these attacks provoked much anger in different parts of the continent leading to threats against South African businesses and diplomatic missions.”

(Compiled by Makhosandile Zulu)

For more news your way, download The Citizen’s app for iOS and Android.




today in print