/ 14 May 2008

ANC calls for calm in Alexandra

The African National Congress on Tuesday night called on members of the Alexandra community to remain calm and to allow police to handle the situation.

ANC Alexandra spokesperson, Pule Phalatse, said the party had attended a meeting held at the Sankopano community centre on the corner on Selbourne and 12th Avenue in Alexandra.

”The ANC calls on the community to be vigilant and not to be used by sinister forces and criminal elements that are trying to destabilise the township.”

This follows violent attacks on foreigners by local Alexandra residents on Sunday and which continued into Monday night and early Tuesday morning.

The ANC had called several meetings in different wards throughout the township to assess and try to deal with the many issues raised in the meetings.

It was also working with law enforcement agencies, including the police, in identifying and isolating the criminal elements that were taking advantage of the situation.

”We would like the community in Alexandra to be calm and allow the police to handle the situation,” said Phalatse.

The meeting was also addressed by the provincial minister for safety and security,

Firoz Cachalia.

Meanwhile, the ANC Youth League (ANCYL) called on police in the township to act harshly when dealing with xenophobic attacks.

ANCYL Alexandra chairperson Thulani Mncube said: ”The ANC Youth League strongly condemns the action by thugs and sinister forces that are using hatred of foreigners to destabilise the township.”

”We are currently mobilising all our members in the township to identify and isolate these hooligans. Some of these criminals are trying to illegally occupy the houses using ‘xenophobia’ to undermine orderly housing processes,” Mncube said.

”We therefore call on police to act harshly when dealing with the situation in the township.

”On Friday morning we are converging at the Sankopano community centre to march to the police station to demand swift action from the police.” – Sapa