The African National Congress (ANC) reacted to the “derogatory comments” directed at South Africa by the Leader of the opposition in Victoria, Australia; saying it’s uncool to stereotype African cities as crime havens.
It all started when a group of inmates escaped from a youth detention facility in Victoria, Australia yesterday.
Already, a manhunt has been launched for the seven inmates who fled the facility located 100kms north of the city of Melbourne.
While they are still at large, their escape ignited a criticism of the way in which the Victoria government is running the youth justice system.
That, prompted Matthew Guy MP, the Leader of the Opposition in the Parliament of Victoria to demand the axing of the Premier.
To him, the present government is doing noting but “standing by and allowing Melbourne to become the Johannesburg of the South Pacific.”
Matthew Guy’s statement agitated the ANC. The party noted his comments as unfortunate asserting that it’s portraying South Africa in a negative manner.
“These comments are regrettable, and feed into lazy stereotypes of African cities as crime havens. They serve to tarnish the reputation of the City of Johannesburg – known widely as the gateway to Africa; and regularly cited amongst several indices as world-class city.
Drawing South Africa – with a well established reputation as a leading tourism destination, into the political frays of Victoria state, is unfortunate and unbecoming of a senior Australian politician,” ANC stated.
The ruling party further regrettably expressed that the Australian MP would likely gain support for his comments from the Mayor of the City of Johannesburg, Herman Mashaba.
Mashaba “regularly rubbishes the very city he leads on media platforms. On a number of occasions Mayor Mashaba and his party the Democratic Alliance (DA) have described Johannesburg as crime-riddled, going on to blame ‘foreigners’ for the crime.
“The ANC hopes that in future Mayor Mashaba and his organization will consider the far-reaching impact of their disparaging remarks – for in essence the Leader of the Opposition in Victoria, Australia is merely paraphrasing Mayor Mashaba,” added ANC.
Also, ANC upheld that Matthew Guy MP words are “insult to the residents of the City of Johannesburg and to the countless men and women who work for the City, and who remain dedicated to sustaining the city’s reputation as a place of choice to work and live.”
As such, the ruling party demanded of the High Commission of Australia in Pretoria to clarify the comments made by Matthew Guy MP.