The Federal Government on Tuesday appealed to Nigerians not to attack South African companies and other businesses operating in Nigeria in retaliation for the ongoing xenophobic attacks against Nigerians in South Africa.
In a statement issued in Abuja, the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed described as deeply disturbing the reports that some Nigerians, angered by the xenophobic attacks in South Africa, have started attacking South African companies in Nigeria.
He explained that targeting South African companies in Nigeria for attack is, for Nigerians, a classic case of cutting off your nose to spite your face, because the investors in such companies, especially MTN and Shoprite, are Nigerians.
The Minister noted that the majority of workers in South African companies operating in Nigeria are also Nigerians, meaning that its Nigerian workers who will be hardest hit if such companies are forced to shut down for fear of attacks.
Lai Mohammed assured Nigerians that the Federal Government is already taking decisive measures to put an end to the persistent xenophobic attacks against Nigerians in South Africa.
”President Muhammadu Buhari has dispatched a Special Envoy to convey to his South African counterpart, President Cyril Ramaphosa, his concerns and also interact with his South African counterpart on the situation. ”
Meanwhile, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Geoffrey Onyeama, acting on the instruction of Mr. President, has summoned the South African High Commissioner to Nigeria to get a brief on the situation. He had since expressed Nigeria’s displeasure over the treatment of her citizens and secured assurance of the safety of their lives and property.