The Gauteng Provincial Government through the Department of Economic Development (GDED) has taken a conscious decision to embark on “O Kae Molao” to bring about order and stability in the township business landscape. This initiative is informed by the concerns of the Gauteng Provincial Government following the latest attacks and looting of businesses owned by foreign nationals in Soweto and elsewhere in the province.
A number of shops owned by foreign nationals have been targeted and looted by some unruly elements in some parts of Soweto and in other areas in recent times. This saw a number of residents taking the law into their own hands. The police have been mandated to investigate the circumstances that triggered the attacks and looting, or their underlying reasons.
These unfortunate developments are not to be de-linked from the broader economic and social challenges faced by the people in the province. It is within this context that Gauteng Government is working hard to deliver on its electoral mandate to create decent jobs and a better life for all.
The outbreak of attacks and looting is partly attributed to allegations that some of the shops are involved in the selling of fake products and goods at cheaper prices. Given the country’s economic and financial hardship, most often people left vulnerable to buying such goods and products. There has been a growing scale of fake goods being sold in most shops in Townships. These goods and products are set to no longer have space or market in Gauteng Townships. Government is firm on putting a stop to these operations, working closely with all relevant enforcement agencies and entities tasked with the responsibility to vet and monitor retail goods in these environments.
The O Kae Moloa campaign will start on the 18th of September 2018. Specialised teams will be embarking on un-announced visits to a number of spazas across the length and breadth of the province.
Pilot operations have already been undertaken within the City of Ekurhuleni where the Executive Mayor of the City of Ekurhuleni, Cllr Mzwandile Masina, led a joint operation of SAPS, EMPD, Home Affairs, Health, and City Planning Officials into the communities of Reiger Park, Tembisa and Thokoza. Close to 51 spaza shops where inspected over the three-day period; 37 Shops were closed down for further investigation; over 25 undocumented immigrants were detained; and over 8 tons suspicious goods were seized and sent to the health laboratories for testing.