A social justice and advocacy arm of the Catholic Church in Malawi, the Catholic Commission for Justice and Peace (CCJP) has appealed to Malawi citizens in South Africa to come back home following a spate of xenophobic attacks against African migrants, saying they are encountering “rejection and prejudice.”
CCJP national secretary said in a statement released on Saturday that the returning citizens should be assured that Malawi government is executing a rescuing program.
“Your brothers and sisters in Malawi care for your security. Come back home for your life is precious no matter how poor you are,” the watchdog appealed.
“After all, there is more that can be done in Malawi. As your coming back home, please do not hold any anger and spirit of vengeance to any South Africans or any of their property. Retribution and vengeance are not a solution. Only love will heal our wounds and bring about justice and peace,” CCJP statement reads.
The Catholic Commission also said whilst it CCJP acknowledges government efforts towards the plight of Malawian citizens affected by the xenophobia attacks in South Africa; it is high time it bring together different stakeholders to reflect upon the occurrences in South Africa.
“We need a stoke taking process to identify the challenges in our country, the reasons for the push factor to South Africa of our country’s youth, and discuss the solutions that must be implemented by relevant stakeholders and authorities- the ministries and departments of Immigration, Police, Socio-Economic Planning, Labour, the private sector and the Nongovernmental Organizations.
“ Government cannot go on to put emergency repatriation plans and leave out the mundane causes and consequences of the issue at hand. This recent experience calls for an immediate national dialogue.”
CCJP has also said it is in solidarity with civil society organisations and activist plans for protests at South African embassy in Lilongwe.
However, they called for the protests to be peaceful , saying retribution through demonstrations will not bring about desired changes needed in the relationships with South Africans.
“ Expressing our dismay with the xenophobic attacks is very important. As we plan, let us remember that peaceful demonstrations and non-violent citizen’s expression of their frustrations are only the genuine means of making those in decision making positions to listen.
“As we are encouraging the general public to participate in the demonstrations, let us, as leaders, ensure that there should not be any differed anger that might destroy property and life of South Africans living in Malawi.”
Billy Mayaya, an activist in the capital, Lilongwe, has said that there are street demonstration planned next Tuesday, where protesters will deliver a petition to the South African High Commission.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :