The call comes in the wake of recent xenophobic attacks which targeted foreign nationals who had to evacuate to their respective countries for safety and affected a record 3, 526 Malawians with a death toll of 8.
In an exclusive interview with MBC, the country’s High Commissioner Cassandra Mbuyane Mokone condemned the attacks on foreigners describing them as very unfortunate and said it created an impression of South Africans as haters.
“We do not hate other people and we therefore publicly came out to condemn them and say we cannot be defined by those attacks. Those attacks very clearly are attacks that came out of criminality. We have lived with foreign nationals for many years”. Mokone stressed.
The country’s diplomat explained that although South Africa welcomes foreigners, she stressed that proper procedures have to be complied with and proper documentation obtained to live there just like it is required in any other country.
“It is only that we will have to find ways of making sure that people are in the country as all other countries do; Malawi does as well. You will not allow people who are here illegally in an irregular manner. But we are saying those who feel they will find something for them let that be done right and through the right channels” Mokone said.
She said South Africa has its socio economic challenges such as high unemployment rates among the youth who are also fighting for the same limited resources.
Commenting on the Joint Commission on Cooperation (JPC) with Malawi, Mokone spoke on the need to look at ways of enhancing the partnership to a higher level for the benefit of the two nations.
“We as South Africans are very keen to engage our Malawi counterparts to ensure that all the loose ends that need to be tied are tied so we can move forward having tied quite a number of things which led to our bilateral relations”. Mokone pointed out.
The South African High Commission in Malawi is hosting a reception this week under the theme “We are Africa” which among others will look at the achievements made and on contributions foreigners have made to the country’s economic development.