By Isaac Aregbesola
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Wednesday said the latest fracas in South Africa, in which two Nigerians were injured, was not borne out of xenophobia.
The ministry in a statement by its spokesman, Dr Clement Aduku, in Abuja, said that there was no reported loss of life during the incident.
It expressed concern that the incident came barely few days when both Nigerian and South African Governments successfully proffered solution to xenophobic attacks against foreigners in South Africa.
It said that contrary to media reports, the latest incident was a scuffle that took place on March 14, 2017 in a motor park in Polokwane in the Limpopo Province of South Africa.
According to the statement, during the scuffle, two Nigerians were injured, one of whom has already been discharged from the hospital and the other receiving treatment.
“The Ministry has received no report of casualty or death of any Nigerian in this latest altercation though some properties were reportedly destroyed in the ensuing escalation.
”From all indications, the recent incident does not constitute xenophobic attacks on Nigerians in South Africa,” the ministry said.
It assured that Nigeria’s Acting High Commissioner in South Africa, Mr Martin Cobham, was working in close partnership with the Consul-General in Johannesburg, Godwin Adama, to resolve the issues.
It said that the two envoys were in liaison with the leadership of the Nigerian community and relevant officials of the South African Government to ensure that the situation did not escalate.
“Meanwhile, the ministry calls on the South African authorities to continue to take firm measures to maintain law and order, including the security of lives and property in the country.
“They should ensure that Nigerians and other foreigners in South Africa continue to go about their normal businesses without let or hindrance,” the statement said.