The request was moved at a plenary session, April 16, by Hon Abike Dabiri-Erewa, the chief of the House Committee on Diaspora Matters, in response to the xenophobic attacks on Africans in South Africa.
The House stated: “Nigeria frowns at the attacks and will no longer tolerate the killing of its nationals in South Africa. President Goodluck Jonathan must immediately convey this to President Zuma as a matter of urgency”.
The mayor of Durban in South Africa, James Nxumalo, yesterday criticised the attacks on immigrants, saying they would not resolve the country’s challenges.
According to Leadership, he spoke in Cape Town at a protest against xenophobia organised by the International Peace Youth Group, an NGO.
The group said the action was organised to show solidarity with immigrants under attack in the latest outbreak of violence that burst across several townships around Durban, KwaZulu-Natal province.
However, the federal government repeated yesterday that Nigerians living in South Africa are in safety, the insisting incidents of xenophobic attacks in that country not serious.
But according to Ambassador Aminu Wali, the foreign affairs minister, Nigeria’s government is in close touch with South African officials concerning the safety of its residents.
Addressing state House correspondents at the Presidential Villa, Abuja yesterday, Wali said: “With the discussions I have been having with Nigeria’s head of mission in Pretoria, no Nigerian has so far been affected”.
“They informed me that they have called the Nigerian community and addressed them and told them to close their shops, stay home and keep out of trouble and obey the laws of South Africa. They have also confirmed that the South African authorities have moved in to take actions that would forestall any further disturbance in South Africa”.
“If it gets worse, it is the duty of our country to make sure our people are brought back, and we are taking that duty serious. We are not prepared to allow any of our nationals to be subjected to such inhuman treatment.
“We are not being reactionary because this is happening to all foreigners, not Nigerians alone. We are monitoring the situation and will take action according to the situation that develops”.
The recent attacks which have left many dead, businesses and shops destroyed and many beaten up, were provoked by a comment supposedly made by the South African Zulu King, Goodwill Zwelithini, who was said to have ordered African migrants to return to their countries as they are no longer welcome in South Africa.