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Will the Gauteng Township Economic Development Bill Fuel xenophobia?

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The Gauteng Township Economic Development Bill is open for public comment. The aim of the bill is to ease the regulatory burden facing township based enterprises and develop the township economy, which is valued at 200 billion rand per year. 

If passed, a draft bill by the Gauteng government will see foreign nationals without permanent residency status banned from opening and operating businesses in certain townships in the province. This has raised concerns over the economic well-being of non-South Africans whose major lifeline depends on spaza shops. 

This draft bill follows concerns by some members of the public that migrants and refugees are taking away business from South Africans in townships.

Bongani speaks to Kaajal Ramjathan-Keogh, Africa Director of the International Commission of Jurists and Thabo Masebe, Spokesperson of the Gauteng Provincial Government.

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