Successive South African governments have been described as weak, for failing to find lasting solution to end the recurring xenophobic attacks in the southern African nation.
According to international relations expert, Dr. Vladmir Antwi-Danso, the current South African government has failed to empower institutions to crack the whip on perpetrators of the xenophobic attacks.
“South African governments are weak; the systems are not working, and institutions are failing. Something is wrong, and government is failing,” he said while speaking on TV3 news analysis programme ‘The Key Points” on Saturday.
He wondered why attacks on foreign nationals, especially Africans have been recurring, “why are they not able to solve the problem and it is repeating itself, it means they are failing”.
He said very little is heard of actions taken against persons found attacking foreigners, indicating South Africans feel emboldened to take such actions because there is no sanctioning regime when people commit such crimes.
Fresh attacks two weeks ago in parts of South Africa has so far led to the death of at least five person with many others injured and hundreds of properties belonging to foreigners destroyed.
About 300 persons have been arrested for their various roles in the attacks
Developments in South Africa caused Nigerians to retaliate with attacks on South African businesses in some parts of Nigeria.
Three Ghanaians, according to Ghana’s Mission in Pretoria, have been injured in the attacks while five other nationals are being detained over resident permit issues
Undiplomatic comments could trigger reprisals
Dr. Antwi-Danso also chastised South African High Commissioner to Ghana Lulu Xingwana and her Deputy Thapelo Madumane for the manner they responded to issues raised about the attacks in their home country.
The High Commissioner is quoted in the media to have said Ghana and other African countries should create jobs for their citizens to prevent them from traveling to South Africa in search of jobs, adding this may expose them to xenophobic attacks.
Her deputy is also reported to have said some of the videos and news making rounds about the intensity of attacks in South Africa is fake and false.
For Dr. Antwi-Danso, two commissioners were undiplomatic with their utterances.
“Diplomatically, my advice to them is to not add salt to the injury, saying it is fake news does not take away the fact that there was xenophobic attack and that someone has died…we don’t solve the problem this way, they are insulting the sensibility of Africans.”
In his view, the comments by the Commissioners could trigger reprisals which may degenerate into serious agitations within the African continent against South African citizens.
“The high commissioners should know how to talk and not arouse the animal instincts in people because it could ignite reprisal attacks which is more insane.”
“My advice to the South African leadership and to high commissions and embassies everywhere is for them to realize that what is happening is a reality,” he said.