South Africa’s 2019 national and provincial elections, which were held on Wednesday, 8 May 2019, were free of any incidents of xenophobia, according to International Relations Minister Lindiwe Sisulu.
Speaking at the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC)’s Results Operation Centre in Pretoria on Thursday, 9 May 2019, Sisulu said she was pleased that there were no incidents of xenophobia in the run-up to and on election day itself.
The minister said election observers had raised the issue of xenophobia, indicating that is was a serious index which the country was measured by internationally.
During a media briefing in April 2019, Sisulu allayed fears of xenophobia following the death of two foreigners in KwaZulu-Natal in March this year, who were killed by locals who blamed them of taking their jobs.
Sisulu said: “We have noted some media reports that some members of the Southern African Development Community Electoral Observation Mission felt reluctant to enter or visit some areas within the country,” Sisulu said at the time.
“In South Africa, we do not have no-go area zones. We have on a number of occasions stated that safety and security of everyone within the country is the responsibility of government. Therefore, there is no reason for such concern.”
The minister said that the previous deadly incidents were criminal in nature but had a xenophobic manifestation.