As violent protests, riots, and arson engulf South Africa, the city of Durban has been witnessing an unprecedented amount of damages caused due to continuous looting and rioting.
According to eThekwini Mayor Mxolisi Kaunda, around 45,000 businesses have been deemed out of commission, and it is estimated that properties worth R16 billion (around 8225 crores) have been looted or destroyed during the riots that include damage to infrastructure and equipment.
Kaunda said, “Preliminary estimate of the economic impact revealed that the unrest had cost R1 billion in terms of loss of stock and around R15 billion in terms of damage to property and equipment.” He further added that around 45,000 businesses that include 5,000 informal traders have been severely affected by the riots. “Small businesses may never recover from this upheaval,” he said.
According to some estimates, over 1,29,000 jobs are at risk in Durban as malls, factories, and certain industries have been burnt down to ashes. A large portion of workers were dependent on these establishments, and it will now add to the already skyrocketing unemployment figures in the country.
Schools burnt down
The rioters have not spared the schools as well. Radha Roopsingh School outside Stanger, KZN, has been burnt down. A video emerged on social media networks where firefighters could be seen dozing off the fire.
Radha Roopsingh School outside Stanger, KZN destroyed by fire. pic.twitter.com/gIgYeVoPpk— Kobayashi’s Basilisk (@FaeceSocietatis) July 14, 2021
In another video, a warehouse of Bidvest Logistics was under attack by the rioters and looters. Notably, Bidvest Logistics is one of the largest logistics companies and provides logistical and supply chain solutions to the hospitality and restaurant sector in the UK.
Bidvest Logistics warehouse being looted right now. Durban. pic.twitter.com/SpUlMSdISw— Kobayashi’s Basilisk (@FaeceSocietatis) July 14, 2021
‘It could be very well a scene from a movie
In another video, a large mob of rioters was seen moving towards the police guarding the road. The Twitter user who posted the video said, “This could’ve been a deleted scene from Dawn of the Dead.”
Police guarding the road as a mob of black looters makes it’s way toward them. This could’ve been a deleted scene from Dawn of the Dead. pic.twitter.com/zvkrN9FXdF— Kobayashi’s Basilisk (@FaeceSocietatis) July 14, 2021
‘Famine is imminent’
Many believe that such destruction will lead to famine in the country. In another visual, gallons of milk was emptied from the container trucks onto the road as the depots that were supposed to take them in were destroyed by the rioters. The damage to the infrastructure is going to overwhelm the government of South Africa in the coming days.
Posted about this earlier, but really need to see it for the reality to sink in. trucks forced to dump thousands of liters of milk because the depots who are supposed to take them are all burned/damaged/unmanned. Electric plants & factories are burning, & a famine is imminent pic.twitter.com/gPO3Uxa8Bh— Kobayashi’s Basilisk (@FaeceSocietatis) July 14, 2021
Business owners indulge in all possible tactics to save their establishments
In another set of visuals, the shop and mall owners were seen spreading oil on the floor to restrict rioters and looters from damaging and looting the premises. However, other than a few falling on the floor, it did not stop the rioters from causing the damage.
…despite all odds, the looters manage to muster up the courage to press on through such vicious obstacles not seen since Omaha beach. It does provide a moment of levity, however. pic.twitter.com/Xjg7o7PFIV— Kobayashi’s Basilisk (@FaeceSocietatis) July 14, 2021
Indians came out to provide food
Despite the continuous attack on the Indian community, the Indians came out to hand over bread to anyone who needs it.
Indians handing out bread despite having to protect their communities from predatory blacks for the last 3 days. Might want to keep this kind of thing under wraps though pic.twitter.com/Od6QSABJlb— Kobayashi’s Basilisk (@FaeceSocietatis) July 14, 2021
The South Africa Riots
Last week, former President Jacob Zuma got arrested that irked his followers. They started protesting on the streets that soon turned violent. Protests got converted into arson, looting, and other criminal activities. Despite the government’s announcement of the deployment of SA National Defence Forces, the arson and looting continued on July 13 and July 14.
The country is also facing racing tension as residents have armed themselves to save their community and business establishments from the looters and vandals. In his statement, Kaunda said, “This morning we have committed to further engage with committees, and this will be a month-long programme that the city will be rolling out in an attempt to defuse the simmering racial tension in these communities, which have been living together for many years.”
So far, 75 have reportedly died, but the actual figures might be much higher.