Police, Soldiers Heavy-Handed During South Africa COVID-19 Work?

Since President Cyril Ramaphosa's announcement of a lockdown in South Africa, the call to stay indoors has not been heeded in some communities and police and military have been tasked to support the call to contain the spread of COVID-19. There are growing concerns in township communities that the only source of food-buying, the spaza shops owned by foregin nationals, are being closed down by police, following what is being called a xenophobic message by Small Business Development Minister Khumbudzo Ntshavheni who said "only South African-owned spaza shops would be allowed to operate" during the lockdown period. Added to this, people living in densely-populated informal settlements may also face the possibility of being forced to move to other areas. There have also been reports of alleged police violence towards residents in townships.

South African Police shut down spaza shops in Govan Mbeki Township in Port Elizabeth, South Africa.


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