By Nwafor Sunday
Federal government has in a riposte cautioned the South African Foreign Affairs Minister, Naledi Pandor, over her statement on xenophobic attack.
Pandor had in an interview with ‘eNCA’, a South African news website, accused Nigerians of doing illegitimate jobs in South Africa. She said that Nigerians are drug traffickers in the state.
“I would appreciate them in helping us as well to address the belief our people have and the reality that there are many persons from Nigeria dealing in drugs in our country.
“I believe that Nigerian nationals are involved in human trafficking and other abusive practices.
“These kind of assistance of ensuring that such persons do not come to our country will be of great assistance to our nation. “Nigeria needs to help address the belief that its countrymen are involved in criminal activities”, Pandor said.
The minister said government was aware of a resentment-driven “Afrophobia” and was working to restore calm.
In his response, Geoffrey Onyeama, Minister of Foreign Affairs, condemned her statement, describing it as ‘outrageous stigmatization of a people from senior government officials that fuel xenophobia and embolden criminals’.
Recall that Nigeria has pulled out from the ongoing World Economic Forum holding in South Africa and had also recalled her envoy.
See tweet below:
It is precisely this kind of outrageous stigmatization of a people from senior government officials that fuel xenophobia and embolden criminals. #ENOUGHISENOUGH @NigeriaGov @DigiCommsNG@NGRPresident @_AfricanUnion @ecowas_cedeao https://t.co/Ok6WF0Idgp
— Geoffrey Onyeama (@GeoffreyOnyeama) September 6, 2019