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Zimbabwe reaches out to SA as fears of xenophobia rise

28 Apr 2020 at 10:31hrs | Views
Fears of xenophobia in South Africa are on the rise again following that country's Finance minister Tito Mboweni's statement that they would only support companies with financial bailout packages if they changed their employment policies to favour South Africans.

There are fears that this could start the axing of foreigners en masse, particularly in the hospitality sector.

"People who want to approach banks or government for funding must demonstrate that they do have a labour market and employment policy that favours South Africans," Mboweni is quoted as having said.

Alarm bells are already ringing in Zimbabwe, where Constance Chemwayi, the spokesperson for the Foreign Affairs and International Trade ministry, said while Mboweni's statement was a reflection of the new policy thrust that South Africa could take going forward, there was need to utilise communication channels available to the two governments to settle the issue.

"The South African minister (Mboweni) mooted the policy trajectory that his government might use," she said.

"The Ministry (of Foreign Affairs in Zimbabwe) would fully respect the policy position that the government of South Africa would adopt.

"Every country has the sovereign right to take measures they may deem necessary.

"Our two countries and governments enjoy excellent relations and we have mechanisms and channels to discuss matters of mutual interest to our two countries."

Chemwayi said Zimbabwe was ready to ensure its nationals were safe in the event the xenophobic attacks recurred.

"However, in the event that xenophobia attacks ensue, the government of Zimbabwe, through our embassy in South Africa will ensure that the interests of Zimbabweans in South Africa are protected," she added.



Source - newsday
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