Cabinet condemns De Doorns attacks

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Pretoria - Cabinet has expressed its deep concern about the spate of attacks on foreign nationals at De Doorns in the Boland.

Hundreds of foreigners were forced to flee their homes in informal settlements around De Doorns on Tuesday after angry residents destroyed their shacks and accused them of stealing their jobs.

Briefing the media after Cabinet's fortnightly meeting on Wednesday, government spokesperson Themba Maseko said police would act decisively on this "negative tendency."

He said: "As government we have to ensure that South Africans and foreign nationals can feel free and safe."

According to media reports, the displaced foreigners spent last night at a securely fenced sports field in the town.

A large tent was erected for them after midnight and two more would be put up there during the course of today.

Toilet facilities had been provided at the sports field and the municipality hoped to make health services available in the form of a mobile clinic.

Meanwhile, Cabinet added its voice and also expressed "shock and disappointment "at the way the national anthem was sung and the way the national flag was hung last Friday during a rugby match.

Durban-born reggae singer Ras Dumisani came under heavy criticism after he gave an off-key performance of the national anthem in some instances getting the words wrong.

The artist blamed his poor rendition of the national anthem on technical difficulties and an "old microphone".

Maseko said the national anthem and the flag are symbols that needed to be protected.