The Deputy President of the Senate, Senator Ovie Omo-Agege, has described the latest attacks on Nigerians living in South Africa by its citizens as callous, cowardly, inhumane and a dastard act that should be condemned by all.
Omo-Agege, who said he was personally appalled by the glaring debasement of humanity with the gross bestiality displayed in some video clips of the attacks being circulated on the social media, said he is pleased that the Federal Government is taking a tougher stance on what seems to have become a routine by some elements in South Africa who randomly inflict pain, anguish and death on foreigners, especially Nigerians.
He noted further that the “Senate is without question in support of necessary steps by President Muhammadu Buhari to save Nigerians in South Africa and resolve the totally unacceptable pattern of extrajudicial killings of our innocent citizens”.
He said as a believer in the application of the law in tackling any act of criminality, he was never against the security forces in the country deploying the instrumentality of the law to track and punish offenders.
However, he emphasized that irrespective of simplistic official explanations now being advanced by South Africa, what happened on Monday was a clear case of demeaning xenophobia and a display of hatred for a particular set of people for no justifiable reason.
“I’m still shocked by the level of violence on display by a set of people presumed to be our brothers not just because we are from the same continent but also because we have a shared history.
“Nigeria, it must be said, played a crucial role and made great sacrifice towards the emancipation of South Africa from the firm grip of apartheid. I wonder how things got this bad that law-abiding Nigerians living in that country have suddenly become prime targets for killings, arsons and destruction. No doubt, Monday’s fresh attacks cannot be allowed to go the way of others since it appeared past efforts at interrogating the horrific visitation of violence on Nigerians yielded no positive result in curbing the mindless horror.
“The strong message that should be sent to the South African government and its people is that the life of every Nigerian matters and Nigeria would no longer tolerate the violence being visited on our people under whatever guise or excuse. Those behind the latest killings must be fetched out and punished while due compensation should be paid to the families of the victims.
“While I commiserate with all those who lost loved ones and valuable properties during the violence, I urge the Federal Government to seize this moment and stand up, as it has always done in the past, for its citizens’ rights regardless of wherever they may be in the world. This abuse must stop and it must stop now!” Omo-Agege stated.