Durban xenophobic attack victims fear for lives, struggling to make ends meet

South Africa

Durban – The xenophobic violence in the Durban CBD is continuing to take its toll, with a father being separated from his wife and three children.

Some members of the Umkhonto weSizwe Military Veterans (MKMVA) in KwaZulu Natal, accompanied by homeless people, are believed to have been among those who ransacked and shut down shops owned by foreign nationals.

Without offering any evidence. claim that non-South Africans had stolen jobs.

According to Nonzuzo Koko, who married a Malawian man, she had been struggling to make ends meet since her husband went into hiding, fearing for his life.

Koko said that she and her husband ran two shops in the Durban CBD and her family had now been torn apart because of ignorance.

She recounted how her source of income was taken away from her a week ago.

“I tried to open a shop and those people said I am not allowed to open one here because I have children with a foreigner, and I seem like a foreigner. They attacked my shop, so I had to close it. Now, I don’t have a shop, my children are hungry and I can’t pay some of my rent.”

Nontokozo Bikitsha, another South African informal trader who was victimised for being in a relationship with a foreign national, said that she was now living in fear.

“I am very scared; life has been very difficult. I don’t get any money.”

No arrests have been made since last week’s violence was largely condemned. Some foreign nationals are saying they haven’t seen the implementation of any safety interventions.

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