TWENTY six Tanzanians returned home on Saturday from South Africa following xenophobic attacks. According to a statement issued on Saturday by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, the group of Tanzanians, that arrived at Julius Nyerere International Airport (JNIA) aboard Fastjet at 5 am.
The statement cited that the nationals were based at an emergency shelter in Isipingo and Phoenix within Durban and were escorted back by an officer from the Tanzania High Commission in South Africa, Mr Elibahati Lowassa.
The repatriation of the 26 was supervised and coordinated by the Tanzania High Commission in South Africa. The statement added that the mission in South Africa has received information that there are 20 other Tanzanians who have sought shelter at Hillbrough in Johannesburg.
The Mission has dispatched officials to the emergency shelter to clarify on the information they received and to repatriate the individuals as soon as possible.
Meanwhile, more than 100 humanitarian groups have urged the African Union’s human rights body to ensure that South Africa take “concrete steps” to prevent further attacks on immigrants.
Seven people have died this month in anti-immigrant violence that has mainly targeted migrants from other African nations, according to officials. After two weeks of turmoil in specific areas of Johannesburg and Durban, the unrest has declined.
The group of organisations asked the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights to appeal to the South African government to protect foreigners living in the country.
In the wake of the violence, a few thousand migrants have chosen to return home. “The solution to the violence should not be to repatriate all foreign nationals, but to ensure an environment in the country in which their rights are protected,” said an open letter signed by 129 groups that represent organisations from a number of African countries.
They also urged South Africa to set up special courts to deal with the cases of attacks against immigrants and foreignowned shops.
Source : Tanzania Daily News