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Treasury unveils portal to measure damage from July riots

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National Treasury has launched an online portal for businesses to report the damage they suffered during the violence two months ago in KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) and Gauteng.

Government’s Business Loss Registration Portal encourages businesses affected by the riots in July to register and disclose their losses.

The unrest and destruction originated in certain parts KZN, and quickly spread to Gauteng, sparked by protest action against the incarceration of former president Jacob Zuma.

According to government, in KZN alone, approximately 3 000 stores were looted and stock amounting to R1.5 billion was stolen, and 161 malls, 161 liquor outlets, 11 warehouses and eight factories were damaged.

In the ICT sector, the Department of Communications and Digital Technologies said close to 20 South African Post Office facilities were vandalised, with some being set alight, destroying critical ICT equipment in the process.

All four of the South African mobile operators – Cell C, MTN, Telkom and Vodacom – confirmed damage to infrastructure.

LG Electronics SA’s Durban-based factory, located at Cornubia Industrial Park, in Sundew Road, Ethekwini, was also affected by the protest action in the community.

Mustek’s Durban offices were looted and its building destroyed and set on fire. The JSE-listed distributor pegged the damage at R20 million.

Government has since set aside a multibillion-rand financial package to assist businesses hardest hit by the riots in Gauteng and KZN.

Then finance minister Tito Mboweni and director-general Dondo Mogajane revealed the economic support package at the end of July.

At the time, Mogajane said the South African Special Risks Insurance Association would be allocated about R3.9 billion “immediately” to support businesses that are in need.

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