Tanzania’s High Commission in South Africa says it has no plans to evacuate Tanzanians amid rising xenophobic violence, in which people of five nationalities have been killed and 10,000 have fled their homes.
A shop belonging to a Tanzanian has been destroyed and two Tanzanians have been killed, however officials deny the deaths are related to anti-foreigner violence.
“Why should we undertake an evacuation when no Tanzanian has died in the attacks,” says Acting High Commissioner Elibahati Lowassa, who acknowledges the deaths occurred.
Lowassa says one of the Tanzanians was shot after being suspected of committing a crime while the other was stabbed in prison.
According to the Citizen newspaper, the inmate is believed to have been stabbed by other prisoners because of his nationality.
Tanzanians in South Africa are now living in fear, says Tanzanian businessman Bonka Kuseleka, who believes the killings were related.
Kuseleka says Tanzanians are appealing to the High Commission to evacuate its citizens, as Malawi, Botswana and Zimbabwe are doing following a ‘pack your bags and leave’ statement by Zulu King Goodwill Zwelithini.
“We haven’t heard a word from them, it’s as if nothing has happened to us,” says Kuseleka.
“The situation is very worrying and we’re appealing to the High Commission to come to our rescue.”
Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation minister Bernard Membe says they have started evacuating Tanzanians from Yemen as the situation there deteriorates.
Last month, Tanzania passed a new bill which makes it harder for foreigners to get jobs in Tanzania.