Ezekwesili ask Ramphosa to apologise

The presidential candidate of the Allied Congress Party of Nigeria in the 2019 election, Dr Obiageli Ezekwesili, and leaders of the Nigerian community in Cape Town, called on Ramaphosa to apologise to countries whose citizens were attacked.

They made the demand at a meeting held on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum in Cape Town.

Members of the delegation that met with Ezekwesili included the representative of Yoruba community in Cape Town, Chief T.A Odutayo; Chairman of Ohaneze Ndigbo (Western Cape), Chief Vincent Nzekwe and Secretary, Simon Odumegwu.

Ezekwesili and the Nigerian community in South Africa, according a communique issued after the meeting and obtained in Abuja on Monday, described the attacks as Afrophobia.

While demanding an apology from Ramaphosa, they called on South African government to trigger series of actions necessary to de-escalate the brewing conflict to ensure that bilateral trade agreements between the countries would not be affected.

Meanwhile, the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights has said it will take “appropriate actions,” in response to the xenophobic attacks in South Africa.

Nigerian advocacy group, Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project, had on Sunday called upon the commission to sue South Africa and demand $10bn damages for Nigerian victims of xenophobia.

SERAP’s Deputy Director, Kolawole Oludare, said in a statement on Monday that justice might be on the way for xenophobia victims as the African Commission had promised to take up the issue.

Oludare’s statement quoted the Chairperson of the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights, Ms Soyata Maiga, as acknowledging SERAP’s letter and promising that necessary actions would be taken.

“Thank you for your open letter requesting our commission to take action to the court. I have just shared the letter with Ms Jamesina Essie King, the Chair of the Working Group on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, for follow-up and appropriate action,” Maiga was said to have written in a reply mail to SERAP.

Commending Maiga’s quick response, Oludare said it signified the commitment of the African Commission “to stand up for the human rights of Nigerians and other foreign nationals in South Africa, and to become more responsive to rights holders and victims.” “This will put massive pressure on the South African authorities and political leaders to uphold the highest standards in the protection of human rights of Nigerians and end their political rhetoric and incitement to hatred, violence and discrimination,” the SERAP Deputy Director said

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