Maimane: Govt must do more for SMEs

Mmusi Maimane is in Soweto today to speak to the community following weeks of violence and looting.

FILE: DA parliamentary leader Mmusi Maimane. Picture: Reinart Toerien/EWN

CAPE TOWN - Democratic Alliance (DA) leader in Parliament Mmusi Maimane says government has not done enough to stimulate small businesses.

Maimane is in Soweto today to speak to the community following weeks of violence and looting.

Residents have specifically been targeting foreign-owned shops and several people have died in the riots, including a baby.

Maimane says without the stimulation of small businesses to create jobs for the youth communities like Soweto, the situation will remain tense and frustrated.

"It is quite disturbing that almost the 80 percent of the stalls here have been closed and clearly in a place where there are small businesses, government has not done enough."

Maimane says residents in Soweto feel frustrated as they do not have jobs, and cannot afford to support their families.

Maimane says criminality must be rejected in all its forms but the South African government must also recognise the frustration and socio-economic conditions that manifest themselves through violence and looting.

"We have to do more to stimulate small businesses so that we know that the enemy isn't non-South African businesses but rather, the enemies are the fact that our small businesses simply cannot compete in a constrained environment."

There was widespread looting following Siphiwe Mahori's death with violence spreading to other areas, including Kagiso on Gauteng's West Rand.

Mahori was accused of trying to rob a shop in Snake Park, a claim his family denied.

Pupils and teachers gathered at the teenager's school in Dobsonville on Wednesday afternoon.

They also called for calm.

The teenager's aunt, Portia Mathebula, said, "We don't like the way the foreigners were attacked. The situation was supposed to be left to the police."

Video: Foreigners flee nationals.