UPND warns Lusaka Mayor against issuing ‘xenophobic statements’
The Zambian ruling party United Party for National Development (UPND) has reprimanded the Mayor of Lusaka, Chilando Chitangala after she declared war on over 3 000 foreigners trading in the Central Business District most of whom she said are Zimbabweans.
Zimbabwean immigrants in the Zambian capital of Lusaka are living in fear of being deported after Chitangala warned them against trading in the streets.
Zimbabwean nationals are already under pressure in South Africa.
“They sell various goods such as second-hand clothes, biscuits, alcohol, plaiting hair among others,” Chitangala said.
“We have gathered that most of them do not have valid documents to trade and live in Zambia and have even applied for market stalls at City market,” she added.
UPND spokesperson Joseph Kalimbwe warned Chitangala against “issuing statements which have the potential to cause xenophobic attacks on African nationals in the city.”
“The Mayor of Lusaka must not be issuing statements which have the potential to cause xenophobic attacks on African nationals in the city. Why blame fellow Africans ? There are Chinese & Indian nationals who trade in Lusaka but no one speaks or threatens deportation on them !!!” Kalimbwe said.
Commentators say the mass exodus of Zimbabweans to other countries all over the region and overseas is caused by leadership, governance and policy failures at home which have badly destroyed the economy and ruined the nation and people’s lives.
Last week, over 89 000 Zimbabweans were arrested at the Beitbridge border trying to enter the country illegally.
During the Beitbridge border post tour by South Africa Home Affairs Minister Aaron Motsoaledi last week, it was revealed that some senior Zimbabwe National Army (ZNA) officers are aware their juniors are receiving bribes from the offenders.
“So you are saying the military command in Zimbabwe knows that their soldiers are taking bribes to let people in and you have told them that but nothing has been done?,” Motsoaledi asked.
In response, the South African military said: “They pay Zimbabwean soldiers to cross the border.” Nehanda Radio