Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Njoli Residents Protect Somalis in South Africa

Sep 19 2013 12:50PM

Njoli protects Somalis

Sithandiwe Velaphi
New Age, South Africa

While Nelson Mandela Bay municipality was experiencing the violent looting of Somali-owned spaza shops around Port Elizabeth, residents from nearby Njoli Square have teamed up to protect Somali nationals and their shops.

Njoli is one of the busiest townships in the municipality. No Somali shop has been looted there ever since the attacks started at the weekend.

Sivuyile Mase, a resident, said: “Not at Njoli. We will never attack the Somali people.

“They are helping us and are not a threat to the community. What is happening at New Brighton is just an isolated incident.”

The looting of Somali owned spaza shops by Port Elizabeth residents have now spread to Chinese-owned shops, police said yesterday.

The situation in some of the townships in Port Elizabeth remains tense but stable with police still maintaining a strong presence, police spokesperson Brig Marinda Mills said.

The tension started when a Somali national allegedly shot and killed a local resident from New Brighton apparently over the issue of the payment of airtime.

Mills said 111 people had been arrested in separate incidents relating to public violence.

The Somali Association of South Africa said five Somali nationals were injured during the looting which it said were accompanied by attacks.

The engagements and talks with community members continued yesterday with a focus on condemning the looting of shops and for communities to assist the police in normalising the situation.

The affected townships include New Brighton, Motherwell, Zwide, KwaMagxaki, Swartkops, Missionvale, Soweto-on-Sea and KwaDwesi.

“More than 150 shops have been looted so far,” Mills said.


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