AU calls for urgent restoration of order in SA

AU calls for urgent restoration of order in SA
July 17 09:29 2021
By Staff reporter

Following mass riots that have claimed 212 lives, witnessed massive looting and destruction of property in South Africa the Chairperson of the African Union Commission, Moussa Faki Mahamat, have called for calm in the country.

In a statement the African Union said, “The Chairperson calls for an urgent restoration of order, peace and stability in the country in full respect of the rule of law. He stresses that failure to do so can have grave impacts not only in the country but the Region as a whole.”

The AU also condemned in the strongest terms the surge of violence that has resulted in the deaths of civilians and appalling scenes of the looting of public and private property, destruction of infrastructure, including the suspension of essential services in Kwazulu-Natal, Gauteng and other parts of South Africa.

“The Chairperson extends his deepest condolences to the families of the victims and wishes a rapid and full recovery to the wounded,” read the statement.

Meanwhile, human rights organisation, Citizens in Action Southern Africa (CIASA) have called on the Government of South Africa to exercise restraint and to uphold human rights in its efforts to end protests.

“The Republic of South Africa has been faced with a spate of violent demonstrations which have been triggered by the arrest and incarceration of former President Jacob Zuma. The protests which were initially localized in the province of KwaZulu Natal have since spread across the country in particular into the commercial hub of Gauteng province. President Cyril Ramaphosa has called for calm amid intensifying burning down of property and looting of businesses. He has further deployed the army to support police in quelling the protests.

“We call on the Government of South Africa to exercise restraint and to uphold human rights in its efforts to end protests. We further call on the all parties including government to open platforms for dialogue to allow citizens to actively register their grievances. There can be no sustainable solution without citizens’ engagement. The situation is getting tense hour by hour such that it may result in super spreading of COVID19 amid the surge in COVID19 cases in South Africa at the moment,” implored CIASA.

The US mission in South Africa have also issued a travel warning advising its citizens to exercise caution.

“Civil unrest and protests continue throughout KwaZulu-Natal Province and Johannesburg and Pretoria in Gauteng Province.  Following reports of blockages on many provincial and municipal transit routes, increased violence, vandalism, and criminal activity at commercial centres, and calls for calm by President Cyril Ramaphosa, the U.S. Mission to South Africa recommends avoiding all non-essential movement within affected areas.  Exercise heightened caution in commercial areas where looting and violence can and has occurred suddenly.  The situation throughout many areas of these provinces is unstable and authorities are not able to respond to all events,” advised the warning.

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