Incredible destruction caused by looting in South Africa — details revealed

President Cyril Ramaphosa and prominent South African companies have revealed the tremendous destruction caused by the looting and vandalism in South Africa.

It started with the burning of trucks at Mooi River in KwaZulu-Natal on Saturday. It was followed by blockades of roads and the looting of shops in Ethekwini and Pietermaritzburg.

Gauteng was next, with roads being blocked, the looting of shops, damage to property, and burning of trucks.

In an address on Friday night, Ramaphosa said that at least 212 people had lost their lives since the outbreak of this violence.

The South African Police Service is investigating 131 cases of murder and has opened inquest dockets regarding 81 deaths.

“Over 2,550 people have been arrested in connection with the unrest, and special arrangements are being put in place to ensure that these cases are prioritised,” he said.

The National Joint Operational and Intelligence Structure has recorded over 118 incidents of public violence, arson, looting and other unrest-related instances.

Ramaphosa said the destruction of property and theft of goods has cost businesses, consumers and the country billions of rands.

“According to preliminary reports compiled by [the National Joint Operational and Intelligence Structure], extensive damage has been caused to 161 malls and shopping centres, 11 warehouses, eight factories, and 161 liquor outlets and distributors,” he said.

This does not include the damage caused to roads and other infrastructure.

Many JSE listed companies have also provided details about the impact of the looting and vandalism on their operations. Details from these companies are provided below.

Pepkor — 489 stores

489 retail stores representing approximately 9% of Pepkor’s total retail stores have been damaged and looted.

One of the JD Group’s distribution centres in Cato Ridge, KwaZulu-Natal, has also been looted.

The JD Group operates a total of 16 distribution centres countrywide, and its KwaZulu-Natal stores, once reopened, will be serviced in the short term from its other distribution centres.

The Foschini Group — 190 stores

Approximately 190 The Foschini Group stores have been looted and damaged to varying degrees. Furthermore, all KZN stores are currently not trading due to safety concerns.

Spar — 184 stores

As a result of looting and vandalism over the past few days across Gauteng and predominantly KwaZulu Natal, a total of 184 Spar stores — including 62 TOPS liquor stores and 31 Build it stores — have been severely impacted.

Mr Price Group — 109 stores

To date, 109 of the group’s 1,592 stores have been entirely looted. In addition, the group has had to close a further 539 stores across its six divisions temporarily.

Famous Brands — 99 stores

The total number of Famous Brands stores that have been damaged and rendered non-operational is 99, the majority being in KwaZulu-Natal.

Its logistics facility in Westmead, KwaZulu-Natal has been damaged and is currently non-operational but repairable once they have access to the area.

Massmart — 41 stores

Protesters gained access to and made off with merchandise in 18 Cambridge stores, 10 Game stores, 8 Builders stores, 3 Cash & Carry, and 2 Makro stores.

Two of Makro’s Distribution Centres have also been directly impacted. Altogether four facilities have suffered significant damage due to arson.

Mustek — R20 million

Mustek’s branch in KwaZulu-Natal has been significantly damaged due to being looted and then set on fire. Total losses to inventory and equipment are not expected to exceed R20 million.

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Incredible destruction caused by looting in South Africa — details revealed