A top African diplomat who has served in the southern Africa region in an interview conducted by panapress in Arusha said that the mayhem in Johannesburg that swept to Cape Town targeting African nationals from Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Nigeria, Som a lia and Kenya so far, cannot be an orchestrated plot, either bred internally or whose strings are managed from outside.
The diplomat, who referred to a media report saying that the violence that had erupted in South Africa was wrongly termed by Western media as racial, while it was mere misunderstanding, agreed that misunderstanding existed, but more should be explored as to who was behind the violence.
The top African diplomat, who prefers to remain anonymous, expressed concern over the slow reaction by the South African government at a time when nearly 50 innocent African immigrants had lost their lives and hundreds were injured.
He, however, did not discard the possibility that the internal differences within the ranks of the ruling African National Congress (ANC) encouraged the ignition of the violence. However, he equally pointed a finger at those who lost power in the country and might have used the vulnerable and marginalised segments of the society against the background that since the fall of apartheid in 1994 they had not seen any significant change in their living standards.
“Hue and cry across Africa is justified, because African countries felt bad because the people whom they offered a hand during the struggle against apartheid and oppression, opted to bite that hand,” the African diplomat emphasized.
He believes that whether the violence was spontaneous or planned it should have been contained on the spot. He also expressed regret that the government of South Africa chose to be passive and negative when fellow Africans who took chances to share with the South Africans their victory and new haven were mistreated and denied that chance, while all doors of South Africa were wide open for foreign investors.
“I fail to find the right expression, but all I can say is that the poor African immigrants were offered hell by South Africans unexpectedly,” the diplomat commented.
Asked if the move by the continent to realize the African Union government could not be the real target of the violence instigators, the diplomat did not elaborate but only said that detractors of Africa were capable of trying to abort Africa’s dreams and aspirations.
“Unfortunately those detractors always succeed in setting fire with the help of some Africans,” he concluded”. Panapress .