Expatica news

South Africa trims death toll from unrest to 330

Violence that shook South Africa this month left 330 people dead, the government announced on Friday, a total that was reduced by seven from an announcement the previous day.

The seven had been included in the toll for the southeastern province of KwaZulu-Natal but did not die in connection with the unrest, Khumbudzo Ntshavheni, a minister-level official, told a press briefing.

Looting and arson broke out in KwaZulu-Natal on July 9, the day after former president Jacob Zuma was jailed for contempt of court, before spreading to Johannesburg, the economic capital.

The police have established the total number of deaths in the Joburg region at 79, and that for KwaZulu-Natal at 251, down from Thursday’s tally of 258.

The toll leapt after some people died of their injuries and bodies were found in wrecked or burned-down buildings during cleanup operations.

Zuma, 79, was convicted in late June for refusing to testify before a commission probing state corruption under his 2009-2018 presidency.

His supporters are accused of fomenting the week-long chaos. His successor, Cyril Ramaphosa, has described the looting as an orchestrated attempt to destabilise the country.