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Foreign shop owners packed up their stock and left Tshwane townships



WHERE kasi kids once used to hang out or buy sweets and locals shopped, all you get now are locked doors.

Foreign shop owners packed up their stock and left Tshwane townships following attacks in places from Atteridgeville to Mamelodi and Ga-Rankuwa.

Some say the attacks were sparked by a march set to take place today, while in other areas cops said it was purely acts of criminality.


Attacks in Atteridgeville on Monday saw three people arrested for looting spaza shops. They were denied bail when they appeared in Atteridgeville Magistrates Court on Wednesday.

Police opposed bail, adding that more arrests were expected.

In Ga-Rankuwa, residents looted two shops on Tuesday night, one in Zone 3 and another in neighbouring Zone 6.

The violent week started with attacks in Pretoria West on Saturday when 29 cars and two houses belonging to foreigners were torched.

Jealous Tshwane kasi residents said they would not sit back and watch foreigners making a fortune while locals were unemployed. They claimed kasi shops run by locals had shut down since the arrival of foreign traders.

Riaj Uddin (30) from Zone 3, who owns a spaza shop in Ga-Rankuwa, said he and his two workers were in the shop at about 7pm when he saw residents storming the shop.

“They took everything in the shop and broke the shelves.”

He told Daily Sun he ran for his life and hid in the back room, where he locked himself in until his brothers came to his rescue.

Riaj said he has helped a lot of people in the area as he allowed them to buy basic necessities on credit.

“I don’t know what we have to do. We are being attacked but we have done nothing wrong. It’s just because we’re foreigners.”

He said his looted stock value and damages were estimated at R70 000.

Captain Matthews Nkoadi, Ga-Rankuwa police spokesman, said a case of common robbery was opened but no arrests had been made.

Atteridgeville and Mamelodi residents are to march to the Tshwane CBD to hand over a memorandum today.
Zizo Gala

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