Emulate Zuma and Buhari's 'good relations', citizens told

2017-03-16 11:15
President Jacob Zuma.

President Jacob Zuma.

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Lagos – Nigeria's lawmaker Femi Gbajabiamila says the "good relations" that exist between President Jacob Zuma and his Nigerian counterpart President Muhammadu Buhari should "rub off" onto the citizens of the two countries. 

Gbajabiamila reportedly said this after parliamentary delegations from the two countries met in Pretoria to discuss the recent spate of xenophobic attacks and how to "deepen diplomatic relations".  

There were several incidents last month of locals attacking migrants from Africa - and elsewhere - and their businesses in both the administrative capital Pretoria and the commercial capital Johannesburg.

Many locals alleged that the targets were brothels and drug dens being run by migrants from elsewhere in Africa, including Nigeria, an AFP report said.

More than 20 shops were targeted in Atteridgeville, while residents in Rosettenville attacked at least 12 houses.

According to SABC, Gbajabiamila claimed that it was only in South Africa where Nigerian nationals were being attacked.

"There is nowhere in the world you hear rightly or wrongly that your people are being attacked in systemic, continuous way. Nigerians are very perturbed about what is going on in SA. Calls for retaliation, but can assure won’t happen," Gbajabiamila was quoted as saying.

In a bid to tattle the xenophobic violence, South Africa and Nigerian authorities said they would launch a jointly run "early warning" system to track and deter attacks against Nigerian migrants.

International Relations Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane met her Nigerian counterpart Geoffrey Onyeama in Pretoria early this week in a bid to diffuse soaring tensions.

"The early warning centre would allow us keep each other abreast of issues and help prevent violence," Nkoana-Mashabane was quoted as saying.

Meanwhile, in a social media video, an unidentified man said that Nigerians were ready to "go back home and mobilise" against South Africans living in their country if authorities failed to address the issue of xenophobia.

Watch the video below.

Read more on:    muhammadu buhari  |  jacob zuma  |  south africa  |  nigeria  |  west africa  |  southern africa  |  xenophobia

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