Herman Mashaba, the new mayor of Johannesburg said that international aid agencies must help to care for undocumented foreigners that he plans to evict from inner city buildings in a bid to attract private investment to rebuild South Africa’s economic hub.
57-year-old Mashaba said he’s planning to use “shock and awe” tactics to drive out occupants living illegally in some of Johannesburg’s buildings, despite warnings by human-rights activists and legal experts that his plans are unconstitutional.
Because the municipal administration doesn’t have the resources to look after those who are evicted, the national and provincial governments as well as the United Nations and international aid agencies will have to step in and provide accommodation, he said.
“It is not the role of the city to take care of the world,’’ Mashaba said in an interview. “All these international bodies looking after refugees all over the world – please help me. I am sitting with a crisis of our own people in the city of Johannesburg.’’
The city’s plans include the use of “overwhelming power and spectacular display of force to paralyse the enemy’s perception of the battlefield and destroy its will to fight,” according to the document seen by Bloomberg News prepared by the city’s Regulatory, Compliance and Special Investigations unit and reported on earlier this year. The issue is non-negotiable, Mashaba said.