While most foreigners in South Africa are willing to forgive so easily and go back to their daily lives since it seems like the only option they have if they want to regain a sense of normalcy in their lives, their counterparts in their home countries do not seem inclined to forgive so easily. While no Nigerian was killed in the last bout of xenophobic attacks, it looks like the giant of Africa has not forgiven South Africa for destroying the noble livelihoods of its citizens.
As Nigeria prepares for the long-awaited handover and change of government with the inauguration that is set to take place on the 29th of May at Abuja, several heads of states have been invited to witness the historic entrance of the “Change” government that the people have been clamoring for.
Speaking on Friday, the Minister of Culture and Tourism, Chief Edem Duke, disclosed that no fewer than 50 Heads of State and other delegates were being expected to attend the May 29 handing over ceremony. He also made it clear that all the 54 countries in Africa had been invited to grace the occasion.
However, it seems like the Nigerian youth were not quite pleased with the fact that Jacob Zuma was also invited to the inauguration considering the recent xenophobic attacks that took place. Some took to the social media to express their displeasure at the news while some others laid their complaints on government websites while threatening bodily harm.
But on a more formal ground, Nigerian students under the aegis of the National Association of Nigerian Students has issued a stern warning to South African President, Jacob Zuma, not to come to Nigeria for the inauguration of President-elect Buhari following what they described as his poor handling of the xenophobic attacks on some Africans including Nigerians in his country in April.
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According to the student body, the failure of the South African President to apologize to Nigerians after the attacks is distasteful. The students expressed their anger in a statement signed by its President, Tijani Usman.
The statement reads:
“We wish to advise the South African President (Jacob Zuma) to rather stay at home and address burning issues, rather than embarking on a visit that is the least desirable. The South African President’s failure to apologize to Nigeria for the losses the country and our citizens incurred during the xenophobic attacks on foreigners leaves a bitter taste in the mouth. There is therefore, no point felicitating with a people who clearly do not matter much to you. President Zuma’s visit will only amount to pretense.”
In support of the statement, the Nigerian youth added that his coming will really be an insult considering the fact that Zuma apologized to some other countries, but refused to apologize to Nigeria as regards the xenophobic attacks. In the words of a student ” He behaved as if Nigerians were not in the most majority of those displaced people whose main sources of livelihood were destroyed.