FG demands justice for Nigerians killed in South Africa

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The Federal Government has asked the South African government to investigate and punish those involved in the killing of a Nigerian in Johannesburg in December last year.

It also called on Pretoria to end extra-judicial killings, criminalising immigrants and xenophobic attacks in South Africa.

The Special Assistant to the President on Foreign Affairs and Diaspora, Abike Dabiri-Erewa, who visited the South African high commissioner to Nigeria, Lulu Mnguni, in Abuja on Tuesday sought assurances that xenophobic attacks against Nigerians by South Africans would be stopped.

Her visit was sequel to the killing of a Nigerian, Tochukwu Nnadi, in December last year by South African police officers. Nnadi was choked to death for allegedly dealing in hard drugs.

Erewa complained that over 116 Nigerians were killed within two years in South Africa, 63 per cent of the extra-judicial killings carried out by the police.

She expressed sadness over the criminalising Nigerians by South Africans, noting that Nigeria and South Africa should rather be engaging in cooperation that could lead to social-economic development as the ‘two giants of Africa.’

The presidential aide said, “The last time we came here was on a sad note, we are here again on another sad note, but you have made very good comment about the fact that we need to work together to stop what is going on anywhere in Africa.

“We are worried about the criminalization of immigrants especially among ourselves and we are worried in particular about the criminalization of Nigerian migrants in South Africa.”

Erewa pointed out that Nigerians who broke the law deserved to be punished, but added that jungle justice should not be meted on them.

She said, “Yes, some do commit crimes and they deserved to be punished, but the extra-judicial killings worried us. In the last two years, 116 Nigerians had been killed in South Africa and according to statistics, 63 per cent of them were killed by the police and we hope that the death of the Nigerian who died on the 29th of December, 2016, would get justice in the hands of the South African authorities because I know you will and I believe you will.”

She called on the South African authorities to educate their citizens on the need to stop killings of immigrants which she described as senseless.

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