Tuesday, 17 September, 2019

South Africa's image, standing 'tainted' - Nigeria president berates xenophobia

I'm not worried; Xenophobia or not people will always go to South Africa – SA High Commissioner to Ghana Nigeria set to evacuate nationals from South Africa
Steven Clarke | 11 September, 2019, 17:21

Some parts of South Africa, including Johannesburg, Pretoria and Durban, were hit with widespread violence and looting in the past week, with reports indicating that the attacks targeted foreigners.

It also read, "The Nigerian High Commission and Nigerians in South Africa should design a fact-based campaign to widely convey the accurate and positive narrative of the value they contribute to their host country".

Mr. Thomas Carroll of Gaylord Popp, LLC, acting on behalf of the Incorporated Trustees of Make Nigeria Better Initiative (MNBI), in the criminal complaint dated September 2, 2019, said the IPOB issued a threat to attack President Muhammadu Buhari, during his visit to Japan to attend the 7th Tokyo International Conference on African Development, holding in the City of Yokohama.

Briefly.co.za reported that the government had warned of possible sanctions against South Africa, should the violence continue.

South Africa has temporarily closed its embassies in Nigeria in response to the reprisal attacks.

"We have managed to block the people who wanted to go and attack the foreigners", police spokesman Kay Makhubela said by phone.

Personal Assistant to the President on New Media, Bashir Ahmad reveals that the Nigerian Government will boycott the World Economic Forum holding in Cape Town, South Africa following attacks on Nigerians and other foreigners.

Many South Africans credit this to the amount of foreigners living in the country; some of which come from neighboring countries such as Zimbabwe, or Lesotho, or even a bit farther in areas such as India, the United Kingdom, etc.

In a statement, the Nigerian president's office Monday gave "instructions for the immediate voluntary evacuation of all Nigerians who are willing to return home". Nigerian artists Tiwa Savage and Burna Boy have publicly condemned the attacks, as well as the South African government.

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The latest outbreak of xenophobia has been less bloody but very damaging to South Africa's reputation at a time when the country can not afford such a blow, and while President Ramaphosa is trying to instil confidence in the country's future.

Nigeria is set to repatriate more than 600 of its nationals from South Africa after a wave of xenophobic violence which led to tensions between the two countries.

South Africa is a major destination for economic migrants from neighbouring Lesotho, Mozambique, and Zimbabwe.

He added that they had a meeting with the Police Minister yesterday.

While only four MTN outlets were damaged in Nigeria, Shuter on Monday lamented that these outlets were franchise-owned businesses, meaning they were Nigerian-owned outlets.

Instead, the High Commissioner believed "We must come together, put our heads together and say what it is that needs to be done for all our countries" because, in her view, "We don't come to a country and take over".

The Ethiopian Embassy in South Africa also advised Ethiopians to distance themselves from any confrontation and conflict until the situation stabilised.

"If they have to sanction the South African Government till the xenophobic attacks stop, they should do it".

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