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Xenophobia ‘does not represent what we stand for’

Foreign workers in South Africa were targeted in the attacks

A team of special envoys from South Africa who were sent across the continent following recent xenophobic attacks has presented President Cyril Ramaphosa with a preliminary report.

The envoys visited countries including Nigeria, Ghana, Senegal, Tanzania, Democratic Republic of Congo and Zambia to reassure people there that South Africa was committed to pan-African unity.

Read:South Africa apologizes to Ghanaians for xenophobic attacks

President Ramaphosa’s spokesperson, Khusela Diko, said the envoys relayed South Africa’s apologies and commitment to working together.

“Leaders of the countries visited welcomed the South African delegation and expressed appreciation to President Ramaphosa for taking time to explain the situation in South Africa which had generated concern in a number of countries,” she said.

Read:Xenophobic attack: All perpetrators will be brought to book – SA Envoy to Ghanaians

The envoys, who were led by former minister Jeff Radebe, had expressed the country’s “sincerest apologies” at a meeting in the Nigerian capital, Abuja when they met President Muhammadu Buhari.

“The incident does not represent what we stand for,” Mr Radebe said.

In a BBC interview two weeks ago President Ramaphosa said he was “ashamed” of what happened in violent attacks that targeted foreign-owned businesses.