Anglican Archbishop Thabo Makgoba has urged President Ramaphosa to demand that firm action be taken against perpetrators of violence against foreigners. File picture: ANA/Tracey Adams

Cape Town - Anglican Archbishop of Cape Town Thabo Makgoba has urged President Cyril Ramaphosa to demand that firm action be taken by the relevant government departments against the perpetrators of violence against foreigners in South Africa.

In a sermon on Sunday, Makgoba said he was “appalled and ashamed” at the violent attacks on migrants in South Africa last week, and voiced his shock that South Africans could inflict the same pain on others as they had experienced in apartheid’s forced removals.

He urged Ramaphosa to “demand that the responsible branches of government act firmly, and especially that those who attacked people and looted their homes and businesses will be arrested and prosecuted”.

"We [in the church] are deeply disturbed by the recent orchestrated attacks on citizens from outside our country – sadly called foreign nationals – for no one is foreign, all are all God's people and all are Africans. I am appalled and ashamed by the violence meted out against them, especially against truck drivers, and at the prejudice voiced against these vulnerable people who come from beyond our borders.

"We are dismayed by the inept statements that fuel mindsets of rejection in the public discourse, and which disregard the trauma of displacement that these, God's people, have to endure," he said.

“I am also calling on members of our church and all those in the household of faith to contribute in whatever way possible to help those who have been the victim of attacks. I confess my own intolerance, and our intolerance as South Africans, and I commit my church to create spaces for dialogue where we can look at how we can support one another theologically, pastorally and in a practical way so that we move away from only condemning the government and towards being part of the solution ourselves,” Makgoba said.

African News Agency (ANA)