Makhura: Riots, looting have set back township economy by 15 years

Looters stole indiscriminately targeting big business, as well as small and micro enterprises.

Gauteng Premier David Makhura. Picture: @GautengProvince/Twitter

JOHANNESBURG - As the key economic routes into and out of KwaZulu-Natal open up, there's growing evidence that this one week of violence has caused damage that will take many years to repair.

Looters stole indiscriminately, targeting big businesses as well as small and micro enterprises.

The Gauteng premier believed that the township economy had been set back by 15 years.

Premier David Makhura said that businesses that were already limping due to the lockdown restrictions were worsened by the current crisis.

The township economy was one of Makhura’s key legacy projects, with many interventions introduced during his tenure to empower locals while creating sustainable supply chains.

But he said that a lot of this would have to be rebuilt due to the anarchy.

“The reversals of this week are more than the reversals of COVID-19. In Gauteng, the looting and these activities started on Saturday night and in six days, the reversal of the progress made in the township economy has been significant. The impact has been huge.”

The Gauteng government has committed to ensuring that the township economy accounts for 30% of the province's gross domestic product in nine years.

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