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Govt and insurance sector condemns acts of violence

Govt and insurance sector condemns acts of violence
12-07-21 / Staff Writer

Govt and insurance sector condemns acts of violence

Johannesburg - The South African Insurance Association (SAIA) says it is observing with great concern the looting of businesses, damage to property and infrastructure, and the barricading of roads and damage to vehicles due to the civil unrest currently sweeping across South Africa’s provinces. 

In a statement issued by the organisation, SAIA stated that “it condemns the acts of criminality and vandalism witnessed and calls for extreme caution and calm during this time.” The organisation also stated that it welcomed the call by President Ramaphosa during Sunday night’s address, that made it clear that government does not, and will not condone any acts of vandalism and criminality, and perpetrators will be brought to book.

“South Africa is faced with a possibility that these protests may linger on for some time. Therefore, we would like to urge businesses, motorists, and the public to exercise extreme caution and prioritise safety by considering other safer alternatives. Motorists are urged to study their routes before departure and factor in alternative routes if they are traveling into or around impacted areas. 

“Citizens are encouraged to liaise with trusted sources of information to make better travel arrangements, while prioritising safety by traveling only when it is safe, or necessary to do so,” concluded SAIA. 

In a live televised broadcast on Sunday evening, President Cyril Ramaphosa condemned the sporadic but increasingly violent protests in some parts of the country.

“Key infrastructure like national roads have been affected, slowing down the transportation of goods and services that keep our economy running. Property has been destroyed. Cars have been stoned. People have been intimidated and threatened, and some have even been hurt. These acts are endangering lives and damaging our efforts to rebuild the economy,” the President said on Sunday evening, while updating South Africans on the developments in the country’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

He said the country’s Constitution guarantees everyone’s right to freely express themselves and to engage in peaceful protest. While there are those who may be hurt and angry at this moment, the President said, there can never be any justification for such violent, destructive and disruptive actions. He said it is a matter of concern to all South Africans that some of these acts of violence are based on ethnic mobilisation.

“This must be condemned by all South Africans at all costs as we are a nation committed to non-racialism and non-tribalism that is underpinned by the diversity and unity of all the people of South Africa, whatever their language, culture, religious beliefs and race. Our commitment to our democratic Constitution is based on the fundamental principle that all people are equal before the law, and that all people have the right to equal protection before the law,” President Ramaphosa said.

He said the rule of law safeguards against the abuse of power, adding that the rule of law protects the poor and the vulnerable. Since the advent of democracy, institutions like the Constitutional Court have been at the forefront of improving the lives of South Africans.

“Let us be clear, as a nation, that we will not tolerate acts of criminality.”

The President warned that those who are involved in acts of violence will be arrested and prosecuted. 

“Those found guilty of breaking the lockdown regulations will receive the stipulated penalty. This will be done without fear or favour. We are working to rebuild our economy together so that more jobs can be created so that more businesses can be supported, and so we can put food on the table, send our children to school and support our families,” President Ramaphosa said. 

 

Insurance Biz & SAnews.gov.za

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