Report: Chinese Landlords Forcing Africans to Pay Double Rent, Citing Coronavirus

A man walks in front of a drawing of Chinese President Xi Jinping on a wall at the Leishenshan Hospital that had offered beds for coronavirus patients in Wuhan, in Chinas central Hubei province on April 11, 2020. (Photo by Noel Celis / AFP) (Photo by NOEL CELIS/AFP via Getty …
NOEL CELIS/AFP via Getty

Africans in the southern Chinese city of Guangzhou are being forcibly evicted from their homes and those allowed to stay are being charged double for rent, DW News reported on Tuesday.

In recent days, the city’s sizeable African population has faced mounting discrimination from the native Han Chinese amid the ongoing Wuhan coronavirus pandemic; the Han blame Africans for a second wave of coronavirus in China, despite the fact that there is ample evidence that the first wave – the original wave of coronavirus, never abated fully in China.

Africans have been ejected from hotels at night, arrested, and deported despite having no recent travel history or known contact with coronavirus patients.  Restaurants have posted notes on their doors stating they will not serve black people.

Several Africans report being evicted from their apartments by their landlords, and some have claimed that they were forced to pay double in rent. Herman Assa and other local African residents told DW News on Tuesday that they were either forced to pay extra or turned away.

“Sometimes if you want accommodation, you pay extra. If a house costs 1000 Yuan [$141] per month, you will pay 2000 Yuan [$282]. You can’t argue. If you do, they won’t listen to you. And when I was trying to negotiate for a new house, the police came and told me to stay in that vicinity. The security guard called the police, and then they came and told me I could not stay in that area,” Assa said.

Kenya admonished China on Tuesday for the racial discrimination against its citizens in Guangzhou.

“The reality is that this has been a very unfortunate outcome. Africans, Kenyans included, have been discriminated against in the process of the provincial government’s response to try and mop up the situation that they are facing there after the crisis that they had over the last few months,” Foreign Affairs Principal Secretary Macharia Kamau said at a press briefing.

“Sadly, they have discriminated against and targeted various foreigners in their response. The African Union has responded collectively in consultation with us,” Kamau said.

Ugandan politician and musician Bobi Wine offered to airlift mistreated Africans out of China on Monday after learning of the “inhumane treatment.”

A Ugandan opposition leader, Wine previously drew attention to China’s selling of surveillance technology to authoritarian African governments so that they may spy on political opponents and dissidents. Wine released a song about the coronavirus last month.

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