Soweto residents chose to commemorate the spirit of June 16 under the banner #OperationDudula in an aggressive stance against illegal foreign nationals.

The Soweto residents had a peaceful march in the bases of scourge of nyaope abuse and unemployment, which are rampant in their community.


They claimed they were being sidelined from work opportunities by the municipality which allegedly employed non-South Africans.


Community leader Peter Dime stressed that the operation was not against foreign nationals but sought to fight those who sell drugs.

“We want to mark the spirit of Youth Day by addressing issues that affect our community. This is not political. It [campaign] was started by concerned residents who see the lives of their children go down the drain due to drug abuse and unemployment,” Dime said.

He added that the march also sought to encourage law enforcement agencies to help the communities to root out drugs.

“This is not about xenophobia. We are here to fix our community and don’t condone criminality,”

Meanwhile, scenes of looting and forceful evictions of families accused of living in drug dens played out on Wednesday in Soweto, where foreign-owned spaza shops were also attacked overnight.

At least seven families were left to pick up what was left of their belongings out in the cold in Diepkloof, where scores of community members went house to house evicting people.

The community had gathered under the banner of the so-called Operation Dudula, which targeted people they said were illegal foreigners running spaza shops and selling goods in the township.

On Tuesday night, after the circulation of a poster calling for the forceful removal of foreign nationals, several spaza shops in Mofolo South and Naledi were looted.