SA business chamber convenes meeting with police, company executives over violence
The South African Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SACCI) was due to convene a meeting on Monday with senior police officers and the top executives of major companies with African operations over xenophobic attacks which have seen the looting and destruction of property, leaving some 11 people dead, others injured and hundreds arrested.
Hostel dwellers shunned Inkatha Freedom Party founder Mangosuthu Buthelezi's anti-violence address in Johannesburg on Sunday, walking out to march and chant in the street instead and demand that foreigners leave South Africa.
Attacks on the small businesses of mainly African immigrants over the last few weeks have sparked retaliatory moves against some South African business operating elsewhere on the continent, such as mobile communications company MTN and retailer Shoprite in Nigeria.
In a statement issued late on Sunday, SACCI said it had invited the top executives of MTN, Shoprite Checkers, Vodacom, Coca- Cola, AB-InBev, Absa, Standard Bank, Liberty, Old Mutual, Multichoice, Builders' Warehouse, Deloitte, E&Y, First National Bank, Investec, Total SA , BP and Massmart for Monday's meeting.
It also asked officials from the state Industrial Development Corporation, the Development Bank of Southern Africa, Brand SA, the department of trade and industry's Invest SA unit, the department of international relations and cooperation, the Nigeria/South Africa Chamber of Commerce and the ambassadors of Zimbabwe, Lesotho, Eswatini, Mozambique, Zambia, Malawi, Kenya, Ethiopia, Somali, Democratic Republic of Congo and Nigeria to attend.
"It is expected that after the meeting with the South African Police Service top brass, a press conference will be held at which the top executives will be reading out their respective statements condemning these xenophobic attacks, and the wanton destruction of property and killing of people," it said.
South Africans participating in the violent protests say they are angry over crimes committed by foreigners whom they also accuse of "stealing" jobs, but analysts says African immigrants have become scapegoats for rising anger over economic hardships.
African News Agency (ANA)