Xenophobic Attacks: Download Statement Below
In the light of the events of the last week, Paragon Group is compelled to issue this statement:
20 April 2015
Paragon Group companies – statement on Xenophobic Attacks in South Africa
The Paragon Group of companies issues the following statement in relation to the current attacks on foreign nationals resident in South Africa.
As a group of South African businesses led by a group of South African individuals, we state that:
- Paragon Group and its constituent business owners, management teams and staff members condemn the current spate of attacks on foreign nationals, driven by xenophobia or xenophobic sentiment.
- We condemn the failure of government and others in power, to forcefully and unambiguously confront this sentiment, in the recent past and in the present.
- We condemn those who gain material or other benefits from carrying out xenophobic attacks.
- We condemn those who justify xenophobic sentiments as being valid and reasonable.
- We will not entertain xenophobic sentiment within our company.
- We will work to make non-South African staff members in our company feel safe, and we will endeavour to protect them where necessary, should they feel threatened or be threatened in these dark days.
Paragon Group wishes to make its stance in relation to this clear.
From a human perspective:
- Xenophobia is nothing other than blatant racism.
- Xenophobia is unacceptable anywhere in the world, not only towards the nationals of countries who assisted the ANC and South Africa during the so-called ‘struggle years’.
- South Africa, according to the Freedom Charter, belongs to all who live in it.
- Within the confines of the law, no South African has the right to deny any other person the right to live in this country, or to make a living in this country. We will always seek to employ the most talented people in our sector regardless of their nationalilty, gender, race or religion and we will continue to do so.
From a business perspective:
- Some of the strongest economies in the world today have been built based on the skill, energy and innovation of immigrants who have elected to live in countries of their choice.
- In the Global Economy, both skills and capital are mobile.
- It is in this context that we define Xenophobia to be bad for our economy, and that of the African continent.
- As an African business, Xenophobic sentiment in South Africa runs counter to our growth strategy.
- Xenophobia is a threat to our business growth.
- Xenophobia is an insult to our staff, clients and partners and consultants in continental African countries.
- Xenophobia undermines the relationships we have built with non-South African business people and their partners.
We will work to increase the diversity of our businesses, within the African reality of the 21st century global economy.