How much was really lost in KZN's looting and arson: A look at the numbers

How much was really lost in KZN's looting and arson: A look at the numbers

What the numbers say is even worse than how it looked on your phone and television screens.

Looting Queen Nandi Drive
photo from video

On a realistic note, it is going to take quite a while for us to rebuild and truly replace the livelihoods, financial investments, and years of hard work that the #KZNShutdown brutally and so easily burned down in more or a less a week. 

We are painfully looking at an overall amount of a R20-billion taint on KwaZulu-Natal's GDP - in  simple terms, this means that our economy has lost that much money. The producers, the businesses, the government, and the consumers are all affected, therefore this weakens our economy even more with this hard knock. 

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We had the chance to talk to the CEO of The South African Property Owners Association, Neil Gopal, who shared the formula the organisation used to accurately reach the numbers . 

The numbers conclude that a total of 200 shopping centres have been damaged and looted. 

You will also see in a shared infographic below that an appalling number of 1,400 ATMS have been destroyed. 

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Among the popular brands to have suffered a loss in terms of damages is PEP - a whopping 489 stores in both Gauteng and  KZN alone sees them negatively impacted. PEP is known to be one of the most reasonable stores in terms of price across the country. With their variety of items - phones, furniture, clothing, and delivery service - most families will find themselves inconvenienced. But where will the families even have the money for purchases with jobs lost? 

Pepkor shared with Fin24 that the group was not yet in a position to assess and determine the full cost of the damage suffered, but reassures shareholders that it has insurance cover in place to mitigate the losses incurred.

Another popular SA brand that experienced a hit is SPAR. A total of 184 stores (including 62 TOPS liquor stores and 31 Build it stores) have been severely impacted, most being in KZN. 

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Now here's a number that's hard to stomach: 150,000 jobs are at risk. Breadwinners, mothers, fathers, and siblings will lose their jobs in a country with an already striking unemployment rate of 32.6%. 

In this infographic, The South African Property Owners Association breaks down the magnitude of what the KZN economy has lost in a legible and plain manner. 

Have a look:


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It is definitely worrisome considering that Stats SA shared earlier in the year that KwaZulu-Natal was Top 2 in terms of how much each province contributes to the economy. Gauteng contributes the most with 34%, then follows KZN with 16%. That is still a big deal considering how many other provinces there are in the country.

On our call with Neil Gopal, one of the things we were curious about was the effect of last week's damage on KZN's local economy. 

We will also ask him the question gnawing at everyone's brain: 

Take a listen to the answers to these questions: 


Main Image Courtesy: Supplied

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