Eric Naki
Political Editor
2 minute read
4 Aug 2020
5:00 am

Thokoza protests are ‘xenophobic attacks fuelled by poverty’, say community leaders

Eric Naki

Police arrested at least 20 people after a week of rioting.

Thokoza Park residents extinguish a fire reported to have been set alight by protesters. Picture: Neil McCartney

Community leaders in Phola Park in Thokoza are adamant the current violent protests in the area are not about power outages, but are xenophobic attacks fuelled by poverty and lack of jobs. The leaders said the area had endemic poverty and high unemployment. This had led some disgruntled residents to join the small group that instigated attacks targeting foreigners and people from other provinces. Phola Park resident and former founding community leader Bathini Sigwela said poverty and unemployment had bred crime and drug abuse in the area. Sigwela, a founder member of Phola Park, said the youth roamed the streets...