Three Nigerians have been injured in fresh xenophobic attacks in Mpumalanga Province, South Africa, PUNCH reports.
This comes less than a week after a Nigerian, Ikenna Otugo, was reportedly stabbed to death by unknown persons in Empageni, South Africa.
President of the Nigerian Union South Africa, Adetola Olubajo, confirmed the attacks, saying the incident began in the early hours of Tuesday.
He said, “The Department of Home Affairs, which is like our own Ministry of Interior that deals with immigration and citizens’ issues, is in the (South African) parliament briefing the parliament on migration today (Tuesday).
“While that was going on, there was an attack on foreign nationals in Witbank area of Mpumalanga Province and there are some locations mainly in Extension 10, even the police commander there was giving a warning to foreign nationals to be careful.
“Though no death has been recorded so far, there have been loss of properties and people have been injured. At the last count, there are four of them that have been injured who are Nigerians.”
Olubajo also confirmed that the shop of a prominent Nigerian in the area was burnt down.
He added, “We are very saddened that even after all the efforts of the two governments to forge ahead with good programmes and suggestions here and there, this kind of thing happened.
“It is so unfortunately because they have to go back to the drawing board or speed up the implementation of some of the mechanisms they agreed on.
“We believe that if there is no deterrent for some of the perpetrators of these crimes against Africans, Nigerians in particular, these things will continue to happen.”
In September, at least 600 Nigerians were forced to return home after xenophobic violence targeted their lives and businesses.
Though President Muhammadu Buhari and South Africa’s Cyril Ramaphosa said both countries would work together to prevent a repeat of such, Tuesday’s episode of the traditional violence against African migrants especially Nigerians has rubbished all those assurances.
Chairman of Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NIDCOM), Mrs Abike Dabiri-Erewa, has said Nigeria and South Africa will implement the “Early Warning Signal” mechanisms signed by the two countries to curb xenophobic attacks.