A disturbing video has surfaced online which shows the current Deputy Minister of Police in South Africa, Bongani Micheal Mkongi, endorsing the xenophobic attack on foreigners.
He said “Yes! How can a city in South Africa be 80% foreigners, that is dangerous to us… you won’t find other South Africans in other countries dominating a city up to 80%? …and if this is not curbed now, our future is not safe. These foreigners will overtake the whole of the country and even try to be president if care is not taken. This is not a Xenophobic attack; we are only fighting for our land!
Meanwhile, some South Africans have taken to social media to describe the ongoing attacks on Nigerians and other foreigners as payback for disrespecting them in their own country.
According to them, the ongoing attacks where shops are being looted and burnt and where foreigners (Nigerians) are being killed is not xenophobia but a situation to show that they are tired of what foreigners do in their country. One of them David Duke with twitterhandle @SirDavid_Dashe
Wrote “When foreigners from Africa sell drugs, do human trafficking, kill our people, sell them fake goods etc it’s not Xenophobia. What makes me laugh is that they don’t do these things in their own countries” Another twitter user Azania@AzaniaIzweLethu
Wrote “There’s no #Xenophobia here, it citizens reclaiming their space from the arrogant African foreigners who don’t respect anyone and anything in our own country. Government has failed & still failing to protect its own citizens, that’s why the people are taking laws into their own hands.”
Meanwhile the Nigerian Ministry of Foreign Affairs summoned the South African High Commissioner to Nigeria, Bobby Moroe, over the xenophobic attacks on Nigerians in South Africa.
The envoy meets with the minister, Goeffrey Onyeama by 11:00 a.m. on Tuesday. A senior official of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Kimiebi Ebenfa who issue the invitation on behalf of the minister.
Onyema had said that the Federal Government would take “definitive measures” in the aftermath of xenophobic attacks on Nigerians in South Africa and described the attackers as mindless criminals, noting that the police intervention was ineffective.
As at the time of filling in this report, there was no feedback from the ministry on the outcome of the meeting.
NIGERIANS BUSINESSES ATTACKED
A Nigerian business man, Pius Ezekwem, who runs a bed and breakfast chain was last week murdered by some south African Policemen in what was seen as a clear case of targeted attack on a foreigner. Several foreigners owned businesses and shops in Jeppestown South Africa, are still counting the cost of the destruction left behind in the aftermath of their shops being shattered on Sunday night September 1.
Two car dealerships in Kaal and Jules streets were among those damaged, and over 50 cars were burnt at night. The Sunday night violence reportedly escalated to Monday morning when more shops were ransacked by a mob of residents. Nigerian car dealership owner Kennedy Orji estimated his losses as a result of burnt cars to over R3m.
“I sell used cars and 30 cars that were my bread and hard-earned investment were burnt to ashes and I don’t know why,” said Orji.
Orji said he was woken up by friends and security who alerted him that his car dealership was going up in flames.
“My heart broke as I helplessly watched everything perishing into flames. I’m lost for words and aggrieved because my own black brothers and sisters did this cruel deed to me.” He said he had been in SA for many years and started the car-selling business from scratch.
Another shop owner, Micky Jacobs, said: “All we want at this point is South Africa sanctioned, because until that is done these xenophobic and criminal attacks will proceed.”
Jacobs said he was earning a living by running his own shop to support his family. “South Africans need to remember that during apartheid neighboring countries fought with them, our fathers fought for them. “We are Africans who are being chased out of our own African country because of unnecessary hate and unproven allegations,” he said.
Jacobs said it was becoming a norm to use Nigerians and Pakistanis as scapegoats for criminality.