Nigeria is overreacting to xenophobic attacks – South African official

Department of International Relations and Cooperation spokesperson, Clayson Monyela Credit: SABC

Spokesperson of the Department of International Relations and Cooperation, in South Africa, Clayson Monyela has accused Nigeria of overreacting to the recent xenophobic attacks on foreigners in the country.

Monyela said the Nigerian special envoy sent to South Africa were given the “facts” and told that “they are mostly reacting to fake news”.

According to City Press “The Nigerian special envoy leaves South Africa having “understood the overreaction by their country” over xenophobic violence.

“Ten out of the 12 people killed during the public violence are South Africans and two Zimbabweans. They were told ‘not a single Nigerian was killed yet your country is the most vocal’,” Monyela said.

“A challenge was thrown back at them to play their part in addressing the big challenge of international migration. The problem is that sending countries do not help much in creating a conducive environment that will not force citizens to leave their countries in droves and only speak out when there is a problem in the receiving country.

“It is a problem not only South Africa but in the UK, US and other countries which are overburdened with the responsibility of hosting foreign nationals.”

Reacting to the call made by Nigerian foreign affairs minister, Geoffrey Onyeama for the South African government to compensate Nigerians whose businesses were burnt and looted, Monyela said the envoy was reminded of reprisal attacks on South African businesses in Nigeria.

“We said to them, in South Africa we expected businesses to be registered and pay tax and that they should advise those affected to produce all the documents so we can help them claim from insurances as it is also expected of businesses to take liability insurance.

“There were those reprisal attacks on South African businesses, and we told them: ‘if you raise compensation, we will also raise it in your country,’” Monyela said.

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