Response – 6th September 2022 – Scapegoating Foreigners by Peter-John Pearson
Across the world, politicians and elected officials of all stripes seem to be vying with each other to make the most outrageous, offensive, dismissive and exclusionary statements about migrants and refugees. The recent comments of the MEC for Health in Limpopo province must in this context be among the worst. Dr Phophi Ramathuba, herself a medical doctor with a pharmacology specialisation, was caught on camera berating a patient, believed to be an undocumented Zimbabwean, for having crossed the border in order to receive medical attention, thereby ‘abusing’ South Africa’s strained health care sys- tem. Her comments went viral and unleashed a tirade of responses, some defending her and adding to the offensive arguments, while others took strong exception to her remarks and called for her dismissal.