FG Orders High Commission to Investigate Attacks on Nigerians in South Africa
The Federal Government has instructed the Nigerian High Commission and consulate in Pretoria and Johannesburg respectively to investigate the increasing xenophobic attacks on Nigerians in South Africa, the Punch is reporting.
There has been an upsurge in the killing of Nigerians and the looting of their properties by South African in the last couple of weeks.
The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Sola Enikanolaiye, told the newspaper that he expects to receive the report of the investigation later this week.
Enikanolaiye, said the Federal Government will respond appropriately on receiving the report of the attacks on its citizens.
He, however, pleaded with Nigerians in the country to remain calm and law-abiding saying the government will do everything to protect them and their properties.
Enikanolaiye said, “In terms of what we have done so far, I have asked our mission in Pretoria and Johannesburg to file a full report, to investigate the alleged killing so that government would consider what is appropriate to the circumstance.
“I expect the report to reach me this evening (Sunday) or latest by tomorrow morning (today). I cannot do so until we have received the reports from our two missions.
“Nigerians should remain calm and law abiding and be confident that Nigerian government is watching development very closely.”
He said it would be premature to speak on the attacks and the reports of South African police refusing to protect Nigerians from their attackers before the investigation is concluded.
Meanwhile, the Chairman of the House of Representatives committee on Foreign Relations, Nnena Ukeje, called on the Nigerian and South African governments to bridge the gap of understanding between them. “What has happened over the years is that, at the level of government, the relationship between Nigeria and South Africa is cordial.
“What has happened over the years is that, at the level of government, the relationship between Nigeria and South Africa is cordial.
“The political leaders accord each other mutual respect.
“But, this has not trickled down to the level of individuals, in terms of how South Africans see Nigerians. They don’t extend that hand of friendship to Nigerians.
“And that is where the problem is. The Nigerians and the South Africans have issues; but the governments have no issues.
“So, we need to engage the government (South Africa) more; there is the need for them to talk to their people more. There is a lot in our long history of relationship that the South African Government must tell their people for them to begin to accommodate Nigerians as their brothers,” she said.
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