The Three Facets of Xenophobia in Post-Apartheid South Africa: The Migrant, the State, and the Local Citizen. A Reflection

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xenophobia, state, migrant, local citizen, South Africa


This article provides a nexus and scrutiny of xenophobia in South Africa by examining it through the lens of the migrant, the State, and the local citizen. After re-emerging from its pariah status in the 1990s, South Africa has made great strides in its hegemonic-driven ambitions in Southern Africa and Africa over the last two decades. In turn, this has made it a migrant-receiving state both from a documented and undocumented point of view. In recent years, this has brought severe repercussions in the relationship between local citizens and their foreign counterparts. Over the years, the government's failure to successfully produce solutions to xenophobia and its disastrous performance concerning curbing border corruption and creating strong migration policies have been on the lips of most policymakers. This article finds that better migrant-receiving and border policies are needed to eradicate xenophobia effectively. Notably, the onus is on the government to draw up, implement and monitor effective short and long-term plans to integrate foreign nationals into society, especially with local citizens.


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Author Biography

Daniel Nkosinathi Mlambo, Tshwane University of Technology

Daniel Nkosinathi Mlambo (Ph.D.) holds a Postgraduate Diploma in Teacher Education from the Haaga-Helia University of Applied Sciences School of Vocational Teacher Education (Finland), a Ph.D. and Master's degree in Public Administration, an honours in International Relations, and a junior degree in Development Studies all from the University of Zululand. His research focuses on African Political Economy, Regional Integration, Governance and Democracy, Migration, and Security Studies. He is currently a Post-Doctoral Research Fellow in the Office of the Executive Dean (Faculty of Humanities) at the Tshwane University of Technology (TUT) under the sponsorship of the National Institute for the Humanities and Social Sciences (NIHSS).


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How to Cite

Mlambo, D. N. (2023). The Three Facets of Xenophobia in Post-Apartheid South Africa: The Migrant, the State, and the Local Citizen. A Reflection. Journal of Ethnic and Cultural Studies, 10(4), 118–133.



Original Manuscript
Received 2023-04-23
Accepted 2023-08-31
Published 2023-09-19