Today the Active Citizens of Nigeria converged at the Unity Fountain Abuja and staged a peaceful protest to the South African High Commission in Abuja, Nigeria against the recent xenophobic attacks against Nigerians and other Africans in South Africa.
The group matched in solidarity for their brothers and sisters in the diaspora who have endured injustice and brazen human abuses ranging from robbery, rape, murder and injuries amongst others just for being migrants.
The brazen killings of Africans have become rampant in the past few days and on more than four occasions in succession, drawn the world’s focus on the human rights abuses going in iconic Nelson Mandela’s country where the world’s famous word ‘Ubuntu’ meaning ‘Unity’ no longer holds sway.
Online, pictures, audios, and audio visuals of barbaric killings, maiming of other Africans, mostly Nigerians, and unashamed looting of properties of foreigners and businesses by South Africans have once again drawn public shock and anger.
At the South African High Commission, no official responded to the group nor showed up to acknowledge them. It was reported that the High Commission had closed to business twenty four (24) hours before the protest.
The Active Citizens of Nigeria group at the South African High Commission demanded the prosecution of all those involved in the heinous attacks, compensation for victims, prosecution of the current Deputy Minister of Police in South Africa Bongani Michael Mkongi and the expelling of South Africa’s High Commissioner to Nigeria.
Recall that the Deputy Minister of Police in South Africa had in a video currently circulating on social media, encouraged xenophobia in the country.
In the video, he is seen saying; “You can’t find South Africans in other countries dominating a city up to 80%…we cannot surrender South Africa to foreign nationals”.
A clear justification to the prevailing evil which raises questions on the country’s government involvement. It also gives credence to the insinuations that if such a high official of government can say such, then it is possible the government may be supporting it.
The South African government, has however, denied the allegations.
The NUJ Federal Capital Territory Council Chairman, Emmanuel Ogbeche; Ms. Edith Yassin, amongst others were the conveners of the Active Nigerian Citizen’s protest.
They say it is time to demonstrate right
action to put an end to xenophobia. “There must be repercussions for this hate
crime. We demand a real bilateral relationship between Nigeria and South Africa
that shows protection and mutual benefits. All lives matter. Our voices count.
Say No to Xenophobia,” were some of their catchphrases.