Nigeria’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama, has restated the country’s position regarding the xenophobic attacks in South Africa and assured that no Nigerian has been killed in the ongoing attacks.
He noted that government at every level has condemned the attacks and described it as unacceptable and stressed that “enough is enough”.
He said the Nigerian government would address the issue once and for all this time.
The minister said whatever measures need to be taken to ensure the safety of Nigerians in South Africa, would be taken.
Onyeama said the Nigerian Government had been in touch with the South African government and stressed that the government had clear directives about the commitments and guarantees that were required of it.
According to him, so much news has been circulating over the social media, many of which are not factual, and as such the situation has somewhat been distorted.
“A lot of things have been circulating all over social media, which have not helped matters and some of them have really distorted the situation and because of that it has impacted the government’s response.
“Number one is that the information that we have from the High Commission and the Consul General in South Africa is that no lives have been lost during this crisis,” Onyeama said.
He added that stories about Nigerians being killed and being burnt are not the case, stressing that what the government knows is that premises and shops of Nigerians have been looted and properties have been destroyed.
The minister also confirmed that Nigeria will not be participation at the World Economic Forum on Africa in Cape Town, South Africa.
He revealed that the Vice-President, Yemi Osinbajo, was delegated by President Buhari to attend the summit, but explained that the President later asked Osinbajo to withdraw, following the xenophobic attacks.
President Muhammadu Buhari, he reported, is worried over the vandalism that has taken place in Nigeria in reaction to the issue.
He said, “Mr President is particularly distraught at the acts of vandalism that have taken place here in Nigeria in retaliation to what is happening in South Africa.
“He believes that we have to take the moral high ground on this matter. We are victims here and we are making that position clear to the international community and the South African government.”