Ekurhuleni activates joint operations centre, turns tide against xenophobic attacks
The City of Ekurhuleni, following the recent outbreak of xenophobic attacks, established two sites that are currently housing about 800 displaced foreign nationals, 588 adults and 227 children. The two sites, at DH Williams and Tsholo Hall in Katlehong, are housing foreign nationals that were displaced from Mandela Informal Settlement and Nhlapo Section in Katlehong, among other areas. The city has subsequently activated the Joint Operation Centre (JOC) to provide humanitarian and related assistance to the affected persons, as well as stabilizing the security situation in the region. Various city departments are providing necessary support, such as waste removal, electricity supply and additional ablution facilities.
The city is also providing standby mobile power generators, metro police patrols and escorts for transport of the affected persons and delivery of their necessities. Various non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and humanitarian assistance organisations responded overwhelmingly to the humanitarian situation. Among those organisations, which are continuing to provide to the needs of the displaced persons are the Doctors without Borders, Red Cross and other local NGOs and churches. Among the assistance provided are food, medical services, blankets, mattresses, toys for the children and sanitary material. Church services are also provided at the sites.
The situation is currently stabilising with few incidents being reported, among the recently reported incidents were shooting of three individuals at Nhlapo Section in Katlehong on Friday, 6 September 2019 and they were admitted to hospital.
Plans to reintegrate the affected foreign nationals to places from which they were displaced are already in place, as well as plans to document those who are undocumented. Those who wish to be repatriated to their countries of origin will be repatriated with the assistance of relevant government departments.
Executive Mayor Cllr Mzwandile Masina visited the DH Williams site on 7 September 2019, to assess the situation and to assess the support the city is providing to the displaced persons.
The following organisations, as well as other individuals, also donated to the cause to assist displaced persons:
Anglican Baptist Church
7th Adventist Church
Agape Family Church
Rockville Baptist Church
ANC Women’s League
Foundation of Love
Source: Nhlanhla Cebekhulu City of Ekurhuleni Department; Communications and Brand