Premium Journalist
2 minute read
17 Apr 2015
3:40 pm

Bafana coach condems ‘barbaric’ acts


Bafana Bafana head coach Ephraim ‘Shakes’ Mashaba has condemned the recent spate of xenophobic attacks currently sweeping the country.

Former Bafana Bafana coach Shakes Mashaba. Pic: Lefty Shivambu/Gallo Images.

Speaking on behalf of all the national football team coaches, Mashaba said a person’s origins should not be the basis of discrimination.

“First of all, I on behalf of all national team coaches would like to say a big no to xenophobic violence,” said Mashaba on Friday.

“It is something completely wrong and unacceptable. Bafana Bafana, Banyana Banyana, and all the South African Junior and other National Teams condemn such actions unequivocally. We can’t say to people because you don’t come from this country, then you’ are inferior and unwelcome. The bottom line is we are all Africans, and we need to understand that.”

Mashaba said previous generations growing up in South Africa had envisaged a free nation.

“When our parents were growing up, their desire was to belong to a free Africa in which South Africa was part of. Now that we have democracy, we cannot say South Africa is only for us. We live in a global village these days.”

The coach called for a stop to the violence.

“Let us refrain from abusing our fellow brothers and sisters who are in this country. They are not here because they are lost; they came here because they said they were coming to their fellow brothers and sisters.

Let us embrace them and live together as one united family. On behalf of all national teams, I condemn the barbaric acts being perpetuated by a few individuals.”

The current situation was taking a massive step backwards said Mashaba.

“What is happening now is taking several steps backwards because we have gone against Madiba’s teachings. The late Tata wanted freedom for his people; he wanted them to be independent, to live the kind of lives they wanted. The democracy we are enjoying today is a democracy for the whole continent.”

Mashaba said the late Nelson Mandela would be disgusted by the spate of xenophobia which has resurfaced in South Africa.

“To those perpetrating these xenophobic attacks, I want to say to them they are not part of us and if they want to, must stop these barbaric acts immediately. Madiba must be turning in his grave to see what is happening in his beloved country because this is not the kind of freedom he fought for.

Refrain from attacking fellow brothers and sisters because that is very un-African.”