The Chairman Senate Committee on Privatisation, Senator Theodore Orji, has called on the federal government to deploy diplomacy in resolving the recent xenophobic attacks against Nigerians in South Africa.
Senator Orji in a statement by his Media/Legislative Aide, Chief Eddie Onuzuruike, said “No matter the degree of provocation, any civil society worth it salts should not at peacetime turn to lynching, heinous murder and incineration of fellow humans who have right to live while destroying their properties. The Nigerian government should be up to its diplomatic best to resolve this issue to forestall reprisals.”
He described the attitude of South Africans against Nigerians as “highly appalling, grossly unacceptable and violates the Rule of Law of international code and convention,” adding that South Africans in the past enjoyed Nigerian largess, hospitality and big-brother status.
“It is on record that Nigeria paid a huge price for the emancipation of South Africa’s Blacks from the supremacist overlords of South African regime of P W Botha and his predecessors who jailed Mandela for 27 years and other harsh penalties for his fellow freedom fighters.
“At a point, South Africa was Nigeria’s trading partner in oil but Nigeria cut off supplies as a sanction against its oppressive policies. Apart from protesting the Sharpeville shootings of the 60s, Nigeria later made Africa the centerpiece of her foreign policy and supported peacekeeping forces in Liberia, Mozambique, Angola and other African countries. The freedom fighters of many of these countries all had political asylum in Nigeria including cash and other logistics supports. Why should the blacks of South Africa turn around to viciously bite the finger that feeds them, more so under the watch of a former freedom fighter thus making South Africa the graveyard of Nigerians?
“South African Blacks hugely owe her freedom to Nigeria and Nigerians. They should think back,” Orji said.