Xenophobia: South Africa describes NANS shutdown of its businesses as unfortunate
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Xenophobia: South Africa describes NANS shutdown of its businesses as unfortunate

- Calls for expulsion of South Africans and protest at South African-owned businesses in Nigeria are a source of concern for South Africa

- The country raised these concerns in a statement by its counsellor in-charge of political affairs, Anna-Maria Jojozi

- The National Association of Nigerian students on Saturday, August 10, shut down South Africa’s grocery chain, Shoprite, at Ota in Ogun state

- The student organisation was protesting the killings of Nigerians by South Africans

South Africa has expressed concern over the call by the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) for the expulsion of South Africans and protest at South African-owned businesses in Nigeria.

The country made its feelings known in a statement issued by Anna-Maria Jojozi, counsellor in-charge of political affairs at the South African High Commission in Abuja on Sunday, August 11, News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports.

Legit.ng gathers that Jojozi quoted Dr Naledi Pandor (MP), minister, international relations and cooperation, to have expressed the feeling at the South African Development Community (SADC) meeting held in South Africa on Sunday, August 11.

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She said that the meeting sought to discuss President Cyril Ramaphosa of South Africa official visit to President John Magufuli of Tanzania, for the SADC summit, from Wednesday, August 7 to Thursday, August 8.

Jojozi said: “I wish to express my department’s concern regarding statements said to emanate from student organisation in Nigeria, calling for expulsion of South Africans and protests at South African owned businesses.

“The protests are said to be in response to alleged killings of Nigerians by South Africans; as you are aware these allegations are devoid of truth, reckless and unwarranted.

“We find these statements most unfortunate as they do not reflect the strong relations that exist between the people and the government of South Africa and Nigeria.

“The two countries enjoy strong bilateral relations, which were forged over many years during our struggle for liberation in South Africa; also, in this democratic era supported by the people and government of Nigeria.”

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Recall that NANS on Saturday, August 10, shut down South Africa’s grocery chain, Shoprite, at Ota in Ogun state.

The students picketed the shopping mall to protest what they described as unrestrained xenophobic attacks on Nigerians in South Africa.

Jojozi said South Africa’s acting high commissioner to Nigeria, Bobby Moroe, had held several meetings with the police and other senior government officials in Nigeria.

She said South Africa had established contact from the highest level of the Nigerian government and received assurances that authorities in Nigeria were taking the calls for protests seriously.

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Jojozi noted: “They have also assured us that South African citizens and their property in Nigeria will be protected.

“South Africa values the strong ties it has established with Nigeria and will continue to enhance these even further."

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Legit.ng previously reported that President Muhammadu Buhari was expected to meet with the president of South Africa, Cyril Ramahosa, over the xenophobic attacks on Nigerians.

There has been reports of Nigerians being attacked in South Africa and this has raised concern.

Abike Dabiri-Erewa who is the chairman of the Nigerians In Diaspora Commission (NIDCOM) spoke in Abuja on Wednesday, August 7, where she disclosed the planned meeting.

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Source: Legit.ng

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