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Pandor: Africa must take collective accountability for xenophobic attacks

Minister Naledi Pandor has delayed her trip to the united nations to meet diaspora civil society organizations in Pretoria to find solutions to the violence.

FILE: International Relations Minister Naledi Pandor. Picture: GCIS.

JOHANNESBURG - International Relations Minister Naledi Pandor said there were two sides to the debate on foreigners in the country.

Pandor said while South Africa could not afford to be characterised as a country that ostracises Africans, leaders on the continent should also not be allowed to degrade their countries.

The minister has delayed her trip to the United Nations to meet diaspora civil society organisations in Pretoria to find solutions to the violence.

Diaspora organisations began by pleading with Pandor for more engagement before she started speaking. But she asked them to hear her first.

The minister then she said Africa must take collective accountability for the violence in South Africa.

“The condition of our continent must change, and we must send a clear message to our leaders that we expect this change not just in South Africa but in all the countries on the African continent. No leader should be allowed to get away with allowing degradation and expecting someone else to provide a response to their countrymen and women.”

Pandor said communities in South Africa feel alienated by a lack of jobs as much as foreign nationals feel unsafe and African countries have no choice but to work together for their common good.

“The violence and hatred we witnessed points to the need for much more deliberate attention to developing African consciousness.”

The minister said she would also engage communities where violence flared to understand the real concerns.

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