South Africa


African Union condemns looting rampage in SA and calls for order

Soldiers walk past vandalised ATMs at Diepkloof Square in Soweto on 13 July 2021. Residents in areas of Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal where looting and violence took place are battling to find food and basic services amid the devastation. (Photo: Shiraaz Mohamed)

You know things are bad when even the AU issues a statement condemning what’s happening in your country.

South Africa is normally one of the countries on the continent tasked to address crises in other African countries. This week, for instance, International Relations and Cooperation Minister Naledi Pandor is supposed to be travelling to Eswatini as part of a ministerial delegation of the Southern African Development Community to address the rioting and looting that erupted there a few weeks ago.

But yesterday South Africa itself became a country of concern to the AU.

The chairperson of the African Union Commission, Moussa Faki Mahamat, condemned “in the strongest terms the surge of violence that has resulted in the deaths of civilians and appalling scenes of the looting of public and private property, destruction of infrastructure, including the suspension of essential services in KwaZulu-Natal, Gauteng and other parts of South Africa”. 

“The chairperson extends his deepest condolences to the families of the victims and wishes a rapid and full recovery to the wounded,” his office said. 

“The chairperson calls for an urgent restoration of order, peace and stability in the country in full respect of the rule of law. He stresses that failure to do so can have grave impacts not only in the country but the region as a whole. 

“The chairperson reiterates the full and unwavering solidarity of the African Union Commission with the government and people of South Africa.” DM


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