Cops fire rubber bullets in JHB CBD while looters want foreign nationals gone

Violence erupted in the same area where Police Minister Bheki Cele addressed residents on Tuesday afternoon.

Police storm Mai Mai in Jeppestown, Johannesburg chasing after looters on 2 September 2019. Picture: Thomas Holder/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - Police fired rubber bullets in the Johannesburg CBD as attacks on foreign-owned shops resumed on Tuesday afternoon.

Violence erupted in the same area where Police Minister Bheki Cele addressed residents earlier in the day.

Jeppe residents have told Cele that they want foreign nationals gone immediately.

South Africans involved in the mass looting in the CBD said they were targeting foreign-owned shops because they were involved in the drug trade.

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One man said they were tired of the drugs that have infested the area.

“All the Nigerians come in big cars. Where do they get the money? They’re selling drugs and this government is behind them.”

More police officers have been deployed to the inner city as they monitor threats of more violence.

Cele has pleaded with residents to be calm and give him until the end of the week to address their grievances.

Meanwhile, the sporadic unrest in and around Pretoria CBD has led the City of Tshwane to suspend its bus services.

MMC for Roads and Transport in Tshwane Sheila Senkubuge said the decision to suspend bus services was taken in the interest of safety.

“We have suspended Tshwane bus services and A Re Yeng bus services except for the Mamelodi route that the A Re Yeng buses run.”


Police said they were monitoring the Lenasia CBD after reports of looting on Nirvana Drive opposite the train station.

A WhatsApp message being circulated on Tuesday warned business owners that the sporadic looting and violence in the Johannesburg CBD, Jeppestown, Mayfair and other areas would spread to the suburb.

The police’s Hector Netshivhodza told Radio Islam that they received a message warning of possible violence and looting.

Netshivhodza said police would remain in the area until the situation was calm.