Xenophobia: We Can’t Attack People Who Fought Apartheid With Us – S/A Envoy

Lulu Mnguni, High Commissioner of South Africa to Nigeria

By Ogbolu George

South Africa High Commissioner to Nigeria, Amb. Lulu Mnguni, has said that the attacks on Nigerians contradicts all the values that the country symbolises, especially the respect for human life, human rights and standing firmly against racism, xenophobia and sexism.

Mnguni, who made this known in an interview on Wednesday in Abuja, denounced the recent attacks on Nigerians, saying they were a poor representation of South Africa’s value system.

”We are deeply saddened by these acts of violence that have taken place against the foreign nationals, especially the Nigerians affected in these communities.

”The South African Government is sorry for the destruction and wishes the injured a speedy recovery.

”We reiterate our view that South Africans are generally not xenophobic.

”If they were, we would not have such a high number of foreign nationals who have successfully integrated into communities all over the country.

”No amount of anger or frustration can justify the attacks on foreign nationals and the looting of their shops.” he said.

Mnguni said a Ministerial delegation led by the Minister of Home Affairs, Malusi Gigaba, has been dispatched by the South African government to the affected communities.

The South African envoy, also said the government is specifically interested in addressing claims of illegal activities by undocumented migrants.

”The police have been directed to work round the clock to protect both foreign nationals and citizens and to arrest looters and those committing these acts of violence.

”The security cluster has been instructed to ensure that these matters are resolved to the satisfaction of South Africans and foreign nationals in the communities bringing about better policing between communities and authorities

”We urge communities to assist the police by providing information on the incidents that have taken place so that the perpetrators could be brought to justice,” Mnguni added.

He said that complaints made by some South Africans about some undocumented foreigners were not enough reason to carry out attacks on them, especially Nigerians.

Mnguni called on South Africans to respect the right and freedom of other nationals.

He also charged foreign nationals to abide by the laws and freedom of South Africa

”Our government is also emphasising on the need for responsible public comments to be made by all leaders, representatives and public figures so as to prevent situations like these from happening.

”We don’t want these incidents to discourage foreigners from coming to South Africa because we need them to develop a cosmopolitan atmosphere,” he said.

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