5 Ghanaians Killed In South Africa Attacks

Five Ghanaians have been reported dead in South Africa under circumstances prompting questions as to whether the deaths are related to the ongoing xenophobic attacks spreading across the rainbow country.

The four deaths come at the heels of an earlier death of a Ghanaian, a direct result of the ongoing attacks in South Africa.

With no telltale injuries on their bodies save the foams at their mouths, the police and officials of the Ghana High Commission in Pretoria are eagerly awaiting the outcome of a post-mortem to establish the cause of death.

According to a report from the Ghana High Commission in that country, the four bodies were discovered in Heibron in the Free State Province, a town which has so far been spared the bloody attacks common in other parts of the country.

The dead included a man, two women and a baby who were found dead when the locked salon in which they were was forced open.

Confirmation of the death of the Ghanaians, according to the Ghana High Commission, was obtained from the South African police who said they broke into the locked salon only to find the remains of the four.

The death of the four has triggered a number of theories about what could have killed them even before the outcome of a post-mortem.

While some think they were poisoned by their aggressors, others think that they could have suffocated, afraid to come out from the salon.

The last theory appears to be weak, given the fact that the town has largely been spared the spate of xenophobic attacks so far.

National Security Council
A Ghana High Commission staff has been tasked to probe the matter further as the National Security Council has also been requested to send an officer to engage with the South African police to unravel the mysterious deaths.

A statement from the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Hanna Tetteh, has assured the public about a continuous update about the state of affairs as and when these are available.

The Ghanaian envoy to that country has not been left out of the surprise which has gripped the South African police and members of the Ghanaian community who have heard about the mysterious deaths.

In an interview on Joy FM, Kwesi Ahwoi, High Commissioner to South Africa, who refused to snub the station as his boss Hanna Tetteh did, spun a web of surprise around the death of the four, saying that it had triggered a lot of questions.

Apprehension about their safety has gripped members of the Ghanaian community, with many preferring a return home, especially as the spate of xenophobic attacks spreads, the plea from President Jacob Zuma notwithstanding.

Koku Amankwah, Deputy Chairman of the Ghanaian community in Bloefonteim, said that some Ghanaians had been compelled to disguise themselves in order to escape the marauding South Africans.

The xenophobic attacks are thought to have been triggered by Zulu King, Goodwill Zwelithini’s call for foreigners to go back to their countries – something he claims was distorted.

Friday’s Death
Last Friday, a Ghanaian was confirmed among Africans killed in South Africa as xenophobic attacks spread.

The victim, Emmanuel Kwesi Quarcoo’s body was found by the roadside with head injuries in the port city of Durban in the Kwazulu Natal Province, the most hit of the tribal escalation.

Locals are hunting for foreigners and attacking foreign shop owners who they accuse of taking their jobs as violence continues to spread across South Africa, starting from Durban a fortnight ago. Some of the victims were roasted in broad daylight.

Police fired rubber bullets and a stun grenade to disperse a gang of lawless youth who had armed themselves with machetes, axes, clubs and other offensive weapons in a run-down district in Johannesburg and baying the blood of foreign nationals, particularly Africans.

By A.R. Gomda

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