PRESIDENT Cyril Ramaphosa of South Africa has finally responded to the horrific xenophobic pogroms taking place in his country coming out to condemn the murders of fellow Africans as unacceptable.
Over the last week, South African mobs have been carrying our frenzied attacks against migrant workers in the country burning shops and homes belonging to other Africans.
South African authorities have been struggling to contain the nationwide surge of anti-foreigner sentiments that flared up, particularly in Johannesburg, where high unemployment has led to the growth of angry mobs.
Populist politicians have latched on to the anger, with deputy police minister Bongani Mkongi justifying the attacks, saying some cities in South Africa are now made up by 80% foreign nationals. However, there has been widespread international condemnation of the attacks, with calls for other African nations to take firm action.
Under pressure to act, President Ramaphosa has finally responded saying that attacks on businesses run by foreign nationals is something totally unacceptable. In a video address broadcast on Twitter, the president called on the baying mobs to stop their attacks.
President Ramaphosa said: “This is something that we cannot allow to happen in South Africa. I want it to stop immediately as there is no justification for the violence.”
President Muhammadu Buhari of Nigeria has sent a special envoy to South Africa to register his displeasure over the killing of Nigerians there. In addition, President Buhari has instructed foreign minister Geoffrey Onyeama, to summon the South African high commissioner to Nigeria and get a brief on the situation, express Nigeria’s displeasure over the treatment of her citizens in South Africa and seek assurances of the safety of their lives and property.