cannot be that whenever people are faced with challenges they find it convenient to target migrants for attacks.” UJ called on ordinary people and leaders to desist from making inflammatory statements that incite violence by blaming local economic conditions on migrants. “AT UJ, WE RECOGNISE THE INTELLECTUAL AND CULTURAL CONTRIBUTION THAT STUDENTS AND SCHOLARS FROM ABROAD MAKE TO OUR UNIVERSITY AND SOCIETY AT LARGE, AND WE REMAIN STEADFAST IN PROVIDING A SAFE ENVIRONMENT FOR ALL OUR STAFF AND STUDENTS. LET US EXERCISE THE SPIRIT OF UBUNTU.” Prof Adekeye Adebajo, Director of the UJ’s Institute for Pan-African Thought and Conversation, was in Nigeria when the most recent xenophobic attacks took place.
On 16 September during Diversity Week, UJ held a series of protest walks on each of the four campuses to show solidarity with the rest of the country and heed the call to end all forms of violence. The aim of the walks was to symbolise how the institution was moving progressively towards the fight against discrimination, xenophobia, CBV and other forms of violence. • If you wish to report any incident, please contact Protection Services on 011 559 2555 / 7609 • You may also download the free Namola safety app: https://www.namola.com/ download • Additionally, our Centre for Psychological Services and Career Development offers assistance primarily to students (and to staff in times of crises). Its 24-hour Crisis Line is 082 054 1137.
In an opinion piece published in Business Day, he said he had a sense of déjà vu when he watched South African mobs on television looting and attacking shops owned by Nigerians and other Africans.
“We have been here before. In March 2017, South African
vigilantes burned and looted scores of homes and businesses belonging to Nigerians in Rosettenville, Mamelodi, and Atteridgeville, which they alleged were drug dens and brothels. The flames of these xenophobic attacks had been fanned, he said, by prejudiced politicians, whose demonisation and dehumanisation of migrants made it easier for mobs to attack them. Adebajo said xenophobia was widespread in South African society from politics to business to academia. These frequent attacks on fellow Africans in South Africa − including maiming and burning people alive − seem to represent an area of South African “exceptionalism” on the continent. The attacks in Tembisa, Alexandra, Hillbrow, Cleveland, Jeppestown,
Malvern, Germiston, and the Johannesburg and Tshwane
central business districts, resulted in eight deaths, scores injured, and hundreds of foreign-owned shops burned and looted, he said.
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