ANC Secretary-General Calls for Foreign Nationals in the Spaza Shop Sector to Be Legally Removed.
Pietermaritzburg: Fikile Mbalula, the secretary-general of the ANC, has voiced his support for the removal of foreign nationals operating in the spaza shop sector. Speaking at a memorial lecture in honour of Inkosi Mhlabunzima Maphumulo, he argued that South Africa should reserve the industry for local business people.
Maphumulo, the former president of Contralesa, was assassinated in February 1991 during the political violence that plagued KwaZulu-Natal in the 1980s and 1990s. He spoke about his ethical and selfless leadership, encouraging other traditional leaders to follow in his footsteps.
According to him, the government needs to regulate the spaza shop industry, which is worth billions of rands and is currently dominated by foreign nationals. He criticized the presence of Pakistanis in particular, claiming that they have taken over businesses that were once owned by locals.
His remarks have sparked mixed reactions on Twitter. Some users accused him of being dishonest and questioned his credibility, referring to recent claims he made about the ANC’s involvement in UIF payments. Others raised concerns about his past controversies, such as allegations of employing ghost workers during his tenure as Minister of Transport.
Critics also accused him of using this issue for political gain, claiming that the ANC is using it as a campaign strategy to attract votes. They argue that the government should focus on addressing the broader issue of criminal syndicates within the spaza shop industry rather than targeting specific nationalities.
Despite the controversy surrounding Mbalula’s comments, the issue of foreign nationals in the spaza shop sector remains a topic of concern in South Africa. The government faces the difficult task of striking a balance between supporting local entrepreneurship and promoting a fair and inclusive business environment.