Media Statement
 
04 September 2019
 
Attendance of high-level delegates at WEF Africa
 
The Department of International Relations and Cooperation (DIRCO) has noted with concern media reports alleging that several Heads of State and Government have decided not to attend the World Economic Forum (WEF) Africa event taking place in Cape Town as a result of acts of public violence witnessed mainly in the Gauteng Province.
 
The Heads of State and Government who have confirmed attendance are all taking part in the WEF Africa event. The event is proceeding smoothly and attendance is satisfactory. Prior to the most recent outbreak of violence, the Government of Rwanda had already notified South Africa that President Paul Kagame will not be attending due to other pressing commitments. President Felix Tshisekedi of the DRC was invited but did not confirm attendance. DIRCO has not received any official correspondence regarding the attendance of President Peter Mutharika of Malawi. There is, therefore, no truth to the reports that the three Heads of State have cancelled their visits due to attacks on African migrants.
 
South African law enforcement agencies are taking steps against the perpetrators of the violence. Arrests have been made and police continue to monitor the situation in affected areas, particularly in Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal. South Africa is a multicultural society that promotes interaction among people of different backgrounds. Our Constitution protects the rights of all people living in the country, South Africans and foreigners alike.
 
South Africa recognises that its future is inextricably linked to that of the rest of the African continent. That is why South Africa plays a leading role in regional and continental efforts aimed at bringing about political stability, peace and security as well as economic development.
 
Enquiries: Lunga Ngqengelele, ngqengelelel@dirco.gov.za, 082 566 0446

ISSUED BY THE DEPARTMENT OF INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS AND COOPERATION

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