By Levinus Nwabughiogu
House of Representatives Committee on Foreign Affairs has stated that the South African government should halt the xenophobic attacks on Nigerians residents in their country forthwith.Xenophobia
In a statement on Tuesday, the committee through its chairman, Hon. Yusuf Buba Yakub representing Hong/Gombi Federal Constituency of Adamawa State enjoined all men and countries of goodwill to rise in unison in condemning the act against foreign nationals, describing it as barbaric.
He said: “We are again witnessing with sadness and revulsion the growing xenophobic attacks on innocent and law-abiding Nigerians in some parts of the Republic of South Africa in the past few weeks.
“To say the least, these barbaric attacks have become one too many in recent years and, therefore, stand condemnable by all men and countries of goodwill.
“United Nations Charter on Peoples Rights and African Union’s Conventions and Protocols, to which both Nigeria and the Republic of South Africa are signatory, allow for free movement of persons, goods and services. It is, therefore, bewildering and unsettling that it is fast becoming a pastime of some nations of the world, for every flimsy reason, to treat Nigerians resident in their countries as objects of disdain and torture. This has got to stop.
“I, therefore, call on our leaders, especially, members of the Executive to join hands with the Parliament and engage the leadership of the Republic of South Africa,especially, President Cyril Ramophosa and the South African Parliament, towards finding a definite and lasting solution to the ongoing act of insanity in that country against Nigerians over there.Also read: Resist temptation of killing innocent people in name of religion, Gbajabiamila tells Nigerian youths
“On our part as a Committee of the House of Representatives, we are already monitoring closely situations in the Republic of South Africa beyond what is being put out in the social media. We are also reaching out to Nigerian authorities and our leaders across the globe in order to see what could be done to effectively manage the ongoing carnage against our people. We use this opportunity to also appeal for calm among our people, who, understandably, may be highly agitated by the reality of the attacks.
“Meanwhile, our hearts and prayers go out to families whose loved ones have in any way become victims of the attacks in the Republic of South Africa. We urge patience and pray that in the coming hour’s things will come under total control”.
Similarly, the member representing Okitipupa/Irele Federal Constituency of Ondo State, Hon.Gboluga Dele condemned the attacks on Nigerians, saying the disgruntled South Africans should respect the right of other Africans across the continent to live peacefully as law-abiding residents in any country of their choice, as enshrined in the African Charter for Human and People’s rights.
In a press statement signed by his media consultant, Mr Israel Fagbemigun in Abuja on Tuesday, the lawmaker said that every human is entitled to respect to his life.
“Article 4 & 6 of the African Charter on Human and People’s right is clear.
“Human beings are inviolable. Every human being shall be entitled to respect for his life and the integrity of his person. No one may be arbitrarily deprived of this right.”
“Every individual shall have the right to liberty and to the security of his person. No one may be deprived of his freedom except for reasons and conditions previously laid down by law. In particular, no one may be arbitrarily arrested or detained.”
“Our brothers in South Africa must also remember the historical contributions of the Nigerian government and people to the anti-apartheid struggle for their liberation when an over $10.5 million dollars was donated to the Southern Africa Relief Fund (SAFR) by the Nigerian workers and students.
“It is also worthy of note that the stay of Nigerians in their country has not been without tangible economic gain to their government.
“I, therefore, call on the Federal government to expedite actions on calling the South Africa government to prevent further escalation of the attacks and ensure that every victim of these heinous crimes against humanity is adequately compensated. Those found guilty of this xenophobic crime must also be made to face the full wrath of the law and consequences of their actions, as it is not only condemnable but morally reprehensible”, the Lawmaker said.