129,000 jobs now at risk because of riots and looting, says eThekwini's Kaunda

Mayor of eThekwini Mxolisi Kaunda said that the impact was severe and that many families were expected to lose their livelihoods now.

Suspected looters carry goods from the Game Warehouse in Durban on 13 July 2021. Picture: AFP

JOHANNESBURG - Businesses in eThekwini in KwaZulu-Natal have been hit hard by the widespread looting and vandalism in recent days, which is now placing 129,000 jobs at risk.

While the municipality was still counting the cost of the damage to infrastructure, property and equipment, it's estimated to now be at R15 billion.

Mayor Mxolisi Kaunda is visiting Phoenix, one of the areas where looters hit businesses the hardest, cleaning out shops, malls and shopping centres over the past six days.

But there were major concerns that the unemployment rate would increase even further in this area, with many businesses not being able to recover from this.

Kaunda said that the impact was severe and that many families were expected to lose their livelihoods now.

"There's more than R1 billion loss of stock by businesses, more than R15 billion in damages to property, equipment and infrastructure, 55,000 informal traders who have also been affected and 129,000 jobs at risk and large portions of that may also be lost."

The mayor said that mop-up operations were now under way in these areas and he was urging businesses not affected to help financially where they could.

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