Xenophobia in South Africa a disgrace

By Rudo Saungweme

It only takes a fool to fail to comprehend the destruction that results from violence. Some have a tendency of thinking that their failures in life were spearheaded by others not knowing that one needs to work extra hard to get what one wants. Sweat pays. A situation happening in our neighbouring country where the South Africans have engaged in xenophobia attacks on citizens of other African countries is a cause for concern.

South Africa has been engaging in a number of xenophobia attacks for so many years infringing the rights of people. The South Africans think that they have everything they need and that foreigners are taking all their resources. This is not the case because foreigners do most of the work that is shunned by lazy South Africans. South Africans cannot make it in life because they are choosy and lazy. Good fruits are enjoyed from hard labour.

The foreign nationals say that they are targeted because they are hard workers, and prosper as a result. They say South Africans are jealous of their success, and should rather work with them in order to learn valuable skills.

This is true. South Africans should learn skills from the foreigners who they claim are making it in life and ask them how they have managed to succeed.

A number of cases of foreigners who were murdered because they would have made it in life by setting up profitable businesses and acquiring valuable assets in the process have been reported.

As Africans we are all one, no man is an island. We must support each other and be able to live together in harmony. African countries depend on each other through trade and labour force.

The xenophobic attacks taking place in South Africa have done more harm than good to the SADC region and the continent at large. The violence has led to the stalling of business especially trade by cross border traders and trucks. This translates to loss of revenue for the concerned countries. Most important of all, the continent has lost valuable lives unnecessarily.

Our innocent fellow brothers and sisters are dying painful deaths, simply because they are hard workers and someone is just too lazy to work to fend for themselves.

The xenophobic attacks will lead to retaliation by other African countries. When retaliation takes root, South Africa will become isolated affecting their aviation and tourism industries which will take a nose dive as no one would want to visit a violence-prone country.

The Chairperson of the Zimbabwe Cross-Border Transport Association (ZCBTA), Dennis Juru has responded to the attacks on Zimbabwean truck drivers in South Africa by encouraging foreign national drivers to fight back the South Africans. The move is unproductive and negatively affects relations in the region.

 “Due to threats by South African nationals that on 2 September 2019 they are embarking on an attack to foreign national drivers, the International Cross-Border Traders Association executive has resolved that if this plan succeeds, we are going to stop all South Africa-registered trucks, buses and flights (from) cross(ing) borders to any African nation,” said Juru in a statement.

The Government of Zambia has also advised Zambian trucks destined for South Africa to park until further notice.

South Africa forgets that its people are also foreigners in other countries. The way it treats other countries’ citizens is very bad. This behaviour portrays South Africa to be more superior to other countries yet it also relies on these countries for its business to smoothly function.

This South Africa’s behaviour will destroy foreign investor confidence. South Africans must not forget that they benefit much from foreign investment and no investor worth his or her salt would want to commit their capital in such an unstable investment destination.

Xenophobia breeds an atmosphere of hostility and distrust in society. This will lead to the decline in the number of migrants to that society.

The society need to mix with other nationalities so that they can share new ideologies, innovations and thought processes.

South Africans need to desist from this behaviour of hurting their own brothers and sisters. We are one and must be able to share everything we have with those that do not have. South Africa belongs to the regional body, SADC therefore; its citizens should see fellow African in their country as counterparts and not enemies.

It’s a pity that the South Africans seem not to be doing enough about this recurrent negative development that is brought by xenophobic violence without weighing its long term repercussions.

Huge chunks of revenue will be lost during the act. Even tourists who bring in foreign currency will be advised not to visit South Africa because no one likes to go to a country where violence is the order of the day.

Xenophobia should never be accepted in the region. It is a failure by the South Africans to accommodate others  something that is worrisome. In the Bible it is always preached that a guest is the same as God. We are all important in the eyes of the Lord therefore we need to treat each other with respect.