African Christian Democratic Party (ACDP) leader, Reverend Kenneth Meshoe, yesterday condemned the xenophobic attacks by South Africans on foreign nationals, appealing for no retaliation while government was “working on finding a solution to the crisis”.
Addressing the National Assembly debate in parliament on the unemployment crisis that is gripping South Africa, Meshoe said the ACDP condemned the burning and looting of shops, describing the incidents as “amounting to economic sabotage”.
“On behalf of South Africa, I ask for forgiveness to innocent foreign nationals for the attacks waged against them by our people.
“I am appealing to foreign nationals not to retaliate but give the South African government a chance to resolve the crisis.
“All of us should be good ambassadors for the country and ministers of peace,” said Meshoe.
Also addressing the debate, Democratic Alliance (DA) leader Mmusi Maimane called on the government to sell SA Airways “and give that money to Gauteng police to fight crime”.
Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) MP Mthokozisi Nxumalo said: “The violence means we will no longer be friends with other nations, with diplomatic and trade relations being affected.”
Referring to the country’s unemployment crisis which has affected 55% South African youth, Maimane said the country was “burning and there is no government action”.
“The 11 million unemployed indicates a pain in our economy. The focus should be on economic growth,” said Maimane.
The DA, he said, supported Finance Minister Tito Mboweni’s blueprint to stabilise and grow the economy.
Maimane said: “We support the National Treasury document but we have noted that the ANC alliance cannot agree on it.
“This document should be put into action because, in the past, we have seen similar documents like Gear and later the National Development Plan, without implementation.
“We are in a crisis and need to lead and work together to reform our politics and economy by making it more inclusive.”