..Attacks, unacceptable, unconscionable-Osinbajo
..As Ikeja Shoprite hurriedly closed to customers
By Olasunkanmi Akoni and Monsuru Olowoopejo
Mob in a separate incidents attacked the business enterprises of South Africans in Lagos in a reprisal over several attacks on Nigerians and their businesses in South Africa.
In the reprisal attacks in Lagos, some angry mob stormed Apapa MTN premises in Apapa, and Shoprite Mall, belonging to South Africans, threatening to set ablaze the buildings.
Similarly, mob reportedly attacked Shoprite Mall in Lekki area, Lagos Island.
It took the intervention of security personnel, who were mobolized to the scenes to prevent total breakdown of law and order.
The mob, at the Lekku Mall, was about setting the facility ablaze when scores of policemen stormed the premises to prevent them from embarking on the act.
It was gathered that the mob halted business activities at the Mall and scattered goods neatly placed on the shelves before they were prevented.
To prevent further attacks, the private security guards attached to the Mall shut it immediately as the Mob stood outside the premises, demanding that the place be opened for them to vandalize the property.
Apparently, afraid of possible attack, Ikeja Shoprite Mall, branch, hurriedly shut down business to save lives and property as well as prevent miscreants from hijacking it and take advantage to loot and vandalise property.
Meanwhile, Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, SAN, while speaking to Newsmen in Kano, Tuesday, on the xenophobic attacks against Nigerians in South Africa condemned the act in its entirety.. Below are his verbatim comments:
Osinbajo, in a release through his Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, stated. “Let me say first that these recent attacks are condemnable. It is very sad and very unfortunate that the lives and livelihoods of Nigerians living in South Africa are once again being destroyed with such wantonness and with such carelessness and recklessness.
“It is unfortunate because Nigeria and Nigerians invested a great deal in the pulling down of apartheid. Besides, these acts of bigotry are entirely contrary to the very ideals that all the great South African leaders, including the present President fought for, and for which many gave their lives.
“Mr President has already spoken about this; and obviously we are very concerned and certainly intend to take this up with the authorities in South Africa in order to ensure that this sort of thing does not repeat itself. This is absolutely unacceptable and unconscionable.”
Earlier, Foreign Affairs Minister, Geoffrey Onyeama had confirmed the incident in a tweet on his verified Twitter handle.
Onyeama vowed that the Nigerian Government would take decisive measures in dealing with the matter as he described the news of the attack as ‘sickening and depressing.’
“Received sickening and depressing news of continued burning and looting of Nigerian shops and premises in #SouthAfrica by mindless criminals with ineffective police protection.
“Enough is enough. We will take definitive measures,” he tweeted.
Recall that South African looters on Sunday night attacked foreign-owned businesses in central Johannesburg, a situation which affected many Nigerians.
The attack began to heat up in the early hours of Sunday, September 1, but it all turned violent in the later hours of Monday.
This attack comes barely one week after a group of Nigerians staged a protest at the Nigerian High Commission in Pretoria, South Africa’s capital.
The protesters, mostly victims of xenophobic attacks in South Africa said they were angered by the recent massive looting of foreign-owned shops in the city by some South Africans.