Nxesi warns that truck attacks in SA could see retaliation in rest of Africa

An inter-ministerial committee has been assembled to look into the ongoing violence in the freight industry following sporadic acts of violence stemming from the employment of foreign truck drivers.

FILE: Labour and Employment Minister Thulas Nxesi addresses a media briefing in Pretoria on level 3 lockdown regulations on 29 May 2020. Picture: @GCISMedia/Twitter.

JOHANNESBURG - Labour and Employment Minister Thulas Nxesi said that he was concerned about retaliatory attacks on South African truck drivers as tensions in the trucking industry continue to escalate.

An inter-ministerial committee has been assembled to look into the ongoing violence in the freight industry following sporadic acts of violence stemming from the employment of foreign truck drivers.

Nxesi said that at least 84 trucks had been set alight or damaged on the country's highways since April.

While earlier this week, a man was found murdered near his truck in a veld in Alberton.

The departments of Labour, Home Affairs, Transport and State Security have finally broken their silence and are condemning the ongoing truck attacks.

They said that they would deal decisively with the matter.

Minister Nxesi said that economic sabotage would not be tolerated and warned that if the acts of violence, intimidation and harassment did not come to an end, there will be consequences for South African drivers in other African countries giving rise to fears of retaliation from SADC cross-border regions.

Acting spokesperson Musa Zondi: "It is a big fear, it is a possibility that our drivers could face retaliation, in fact there have been threats to that effect and as government, of course, we want free movement in the SADC region. We depend on each other from the economic view. Everything should be done within the confines of the law, within the confines of applicable legislation and labour practices."

The 12-member inter-ministerial committee will also review policies in matters of migration and employment.

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