Johannesburg, April 21st, 2015
Dear Emzingo community,
Emzingo understands the genuine concern regarding a recent spate of xenophobic attacks against African nationals in townships across South Africa.
The safety of our participants is paramount to Emzingo, and to that end, our Emzingo South African team is maintaining close communication with all of our stakeholders on the ground and across the city of Johannesburg, as well as with the diplomatic community security agencies.
The SA government’s response has been immediate and effective, with an increased police presence in areas of reported violence and where there have been large gatherings.
The violence over the weekend was photographed and widely circulated throughout international media. While horrific, it should be noted that these events have been isolated, and are not considered the general state of affairs in South Africa. Furthermore, none of our field partners have experienced violence in or near their own communities.
The US Government has not issued any travel warnings at this time, as the attacks are specifically targeted towards African nationals living in informal communities, and they remain isolated incidents in specific geographical areas.
Our participants will be living in Auckland Park, a residential area that is far removed from where any attacks have occurred in Johannesburg. We will continue to closely monitor the situation and will not place participants with field partners who are in close proximity to where attacks have taken place.
Participants in our upcoming programs are welcome to reach out to myself, or Nizenande should they have any concerns about the state of affairs in South Africa. Participants can also register for the US Embassy Travel advisory service to receive the email travel alerts: https://step.state.gov/step/
Be assured that we are monitoring this situation very closely and we will be in immediate contact should circumstances change.
Christopher MacLean Country Manager – South Africa – Emzingo Group LLC Cell. +27720332341 (South Africa) Email: firstname.lastname@example.org