Monday letter1

Ingrates are toxic, they deny others of much needed help…Ena E. Orugbo

The cat was let out of the bag via an aimless tweet by South Africa’s A-list actor, Hlomla Dandala. “Driving through Yeoville and Hillbrow reminds one of how much we’ve lost to foreign African nationals. Call it xenophobia all you like but truth is truth”. The same people who castigated westerners for apartheid are today justifying xenophobia. It is called the law of double standards. Tomorrow they will blame complex technology for their misery. Proverbs 23:7a is explicit, “For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he” and Napoleon Hill was right, “more gold has been mined from the hearts of men than from the ground”. Hlomla Dandala, his fellow travellers and Nigeria’s visionless politicians deserve pity. 

It is troubling that the same foreign African nationals, who despite western pressures, fought to end apartheid are now themselves victims of xenophobic attacks in South Africa. Are there foreign African nationals with criminal DNA? Yes, but one size never fits all because they are professional foreign African nationals contributing to the South African economy. A large section of black South Africans have failed to leverage on education and the liberalized South African economy to better their lives. Buck-passing is now their pastime. Make no mistake, life abhors a vacuum and the world is now a global village. Hlomla Dandala and his ungrateful mob must tighten their belts or forever hold their peace. 


In the 21st century, slavery has no respect for colour or creed. You are either poor or rich. In 1994, the political and social apartheid in South Africa ended for unofficial financial apartheid to begin. Julius Malema, apartheid hero and the former President of the African National Congress (ANC) Youth League now knows better. In 2013, he broke away from South Africa’s ruling party, ANC to form the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF). Unfortunately, you can’t take a wrong route to the right destination. Malema’s vision was dead on arrival, his concept of Economic Freedom is founded on economic nationalism not knowledge economy. A case of moving two steps forward and two steps backwards. 

 The American dream epitomizes lasting victory because it was multiracial and inclusive. Are you still wondering why Nigeria is a wandering nation? Are you still wondering why South Africa is synonymous with xenophobic attacks? The answers are hidden within a poser. What are the Nigerian and South African dreams? Lasting victory is founded on a clear vision that is driven by team work, love and a growth-centric outlook. As xenophobia gains momentum among thoughtless South Africans and poverty becomes an achievement for careless Nigerian politicians, let the tactless killing of Gadhafi and fruitless destruction of Libya be amber lights for avoidable scenarios of global proportions.


The Huffington Post captioned it neatly. “Hate the Rich? Try Applauding Them!” When political and social apartheid were law in South Africa, foreign African nationals extended love to their brothers in South Africa. Try Applauding Them! Recurrent xenophobic attacks against foreign African nationals in South Africa, is an indicator that it is time to start pitying and praying for weak South Africans like Hlomla Dandala. Nigeria’s visionless politicians are not left out. In 2011, Human Rights Watch reports that post-election violence led to the death of 800 harmless Nigerians. Nigeria’s 2019 general elections are hours away and the senseless killing of Nigerians in South Africa or Nigeria must stop. 


Dr. Enameguolo Orugbo,


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