Facing up to the unfamiliar

6 May 2018

Framing this as a problem of foreigners versus South Africans makes xenophobia a political third rail. There is no political mileage to be gained from protecting those seen as jumping borders and jumping queues. To the contrary, politicians increasingly embrace the foreign figure to explain paucities of jobs, houses, services, and security. As politics becomes ever more competitive, constituencies will always come first and next year’s local government elections will undoubtedly test constitutional commitments to inclusion.

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