Komatipoort – Xenophobic violence has broken out in Mozambique, forcing South Africans to leave the neighbouring country in a hurry, while trucks exporting goods have been grounded.
Truck driver John Mashiloane, who works for Ngululu Carriers told a News24 correspondent that he was forced to return to South Africa after the truck he was driving was stoned a short distance from the border town of Ressano Garcia.
“I’m back in South Africa, we have parked our trucks in Komatipoort. When we went into Mozambique in the morning, we saw that traffic was clear and thought it was fine, but just 4km into Mozambique near the Muamba Toll Gate, we found a mob of about 300 people in bakkies who started pelting our trucks with stones and telling us that we are killing their brothers and sisters so we deserve to die too,” said Mashiloane.
Ngululu’s operational manager, Jay Luvhani, said that their trucking business had come to a standstill.
“In the early hours of the day, our drivers in the harbour were attacked and police had to intervene and they have since secured our trucks. We are looking forward to the situation being calm. But as we speak, it’s not business as usual in Mozambique due to the retaliation of the Mozambicans over the xenophobic attacks in South Africa,” Luvhani said.
Mozambican national Sabelo Benito, who works at the Fish Market in Maputo, said he and his colleagues had received an SMS saying they should not travel to Mbombela because it was too dangerous.
“We got this SMS from some people around; it’s circulating and they are saying it’s very dangerous to travel to Mbombela as South Africans are killing our brothers and sisters. They said we must also retaliate and hurt them. This is not good for us here because our visitors are now scared. Some have since said they are going back to South Africa,” said Benito.