via Xenophobia: Zimbos petition SA envoy – New Zimbabwe 17/04/2015
HUNDREDS of activists on Friday marched to the South African embassy in Harare where they successfully handed in a petition calling for an end to xenophobic attacks against African immigrants in that country.
Demonstrators handed in the petition before anti-riot police stormed the embassy demanding a police clearance letter from the protestors.
There was tension as angry activists told the police that there was no need for them to have police authority to “tell South Africa that they must stop killing our relatives”.
In the end there were no incidents as the protestors managed to proceed with their activity.
However, Ambassador Vusi Mavimbela did not come out to address the demonstrators who later left the petition with the embassy’s security guards.
Speaking from the embassy, Human Rights Watch senior researcher for Southern Africa Dewa Mavhinga said they were also going to petition President Robert Mugabe as the leader of the African Union and Southern African Development Community to take action.
“He is too silent and he needs to speak out,” said Mavinga.
“We are also saying that the reason why thousands are leaving the country to become victims in South Africa is because they are fleeing difficulties and repression back home.
“So it is not just about people you are seeing here against South Africa but for Mugabe himself to ensure that Zimbabwe is habitable and that there is a conducive human rights environment in this country”.
Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition director Macdonald Lewanika said Mugabe, as the AU and SADC head, must make a “definitive statement” against what is happening in South Africa.
“The President must make a definitive statement to the effect that what is happening is un-African that the government of South Africa must take responsibility and stop the violence,” said Lewanika.
“What is happening is criminal .The people who are perpetrating these acts must be arrested”.