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African Leaders ‘Boycott’ WEF meeting in SA amid Xenophobic attacks

Three sub-Saharan african leaders will not attend the 28th World Economic Forum (WEF) on Africa, which will be held in Cape Town from September 4 to 6, the South Africa Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) has reported.

According to SABC, the Department of International Relations and Coperation (DIRCO) in South Africa has confirmed that it has received an official communication from the Rwandan government that its president, Paul Kagame will no longer be attending the WEF on Africa meeting in Cape Town.

The state media adds that reports suggest countries such as, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) President Felix Tshisekedi and Malawi President Peter Mutharika have withdrawn their participation as well, citing the recent violence and the looting of shops belonging to foreign nationals especially in Gauteng.
Zambia has also cancelled a scheduled friendly match with Bafana Bafana citing security concerns.

But DIRCO says it has not received any official communication from the DRC and Malawi governments.

South Africa has been hit by an outbreak of attacks on migrants from other African countries as the nation prepared to host a meeting of political and business leaders from across the continent.

A spate of violence that broke out in suburbs south of Johannesburg’s city center on Sunday and spread to the central business district on Monday saw the destruction of more than 50 shops and business premises mainly owned by Africans from countries in the rest of the continent such as Nigeria and Somalia. Cars and properties were torched and widespread looting took place.

Heads of state or government participating in the meeting include: South Africa’s President Cyril Ramaphosa; Mokgweetsi Masisi, President of Botswana; Azali Assoumani, President of the Union of the Comoros; Mandulo Ambrose Dlamini, Prime Minister of Eswatini; Sahle-Work Zewde, President of Ethiopia, Hage Geingob, President of Namibia, Yemi Osinbajo, Vice-President of Nigeria, Yoweri Museveni, President of Uganda, Danny Faure, President of Seychelles, Emmerson Mnangagwa, President of Zimbabwe.

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