Posted by Mayowa Okekale, Abuja | 10 July 2019 | 537 times
The Nigerian Senate has called on South African Government to take steps to stop the killing of Nigerians resident in the country and resolved to issue a travel alert to Nigerians traveling to South Africa to be security conscious.
It also resolved to urge the Federal Government not to relent in its efforts to unravel the circumstances of the recent murder of Nigerian insurance expert, Mrs. Elizabeth Ndubuisi-Chukwu, in her hotel room in Johannesburg during a conference in South Africa.
The upper chamber equally warned that Nigeria should not be taken for granted by South Africans, a resolution which followed the adoption of a motion on the “Death of Elizabeth Ndubuisi-Chukwu in South Africa,” sponsored by the Minority Leader, Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe.
The lawmakers noted that the increasing killing of Nigerians carrying out legitimate businesses in South Africans implied that the role Nigerian played in the liberation of the country during apartheid is unappreciated by the people of the country.
Leading the debate, Senator Abaribe, representative of Abia South, noted that late Ndubuisi-Chukwu was in South Africa as a delegate of the Federal Government to attend a programme.
He said that she was allegedly killed by yet-to-be-identified suspects in her hotel room.
“She went to South Africa to attend the conference of the African Insurance Organisation (A10) and initially was suspected to have died of cardiac arrest.
“The insinuation was proved wrong, following autopsy report released on June 20, 2019, by South Africa’s Department of Home Affairs, which indicated in a Death Certificate that the death was unnatural and suspected to be murder due to strangulation.
“The suspicion that she could have been murdered was further confirmed in a separate document issued by South Africa’s Department of Health on June 27, 2019, where it corroborated the autopsy report and revealed that she was strangled.
“This is not the First time Nigerians have died in suspicious and curious circumstances In South Africa,” Abaribe added.
In his contribution, the Chief Whip, Senator Orji Uzor Kalu, gave further insights into how Nigerians are sometimes trailed to their hotels and either killed or robbed in South Africa.
Kalu insisted that the Federal Government should take measures to stop what he described as the endless killing of Nigerians doing legitimate businesses in the former apartheid country.
Kalu said: “I was in the country and I visited the embassy. I interacted with three former presidents. When they think you have some money, they track you from the airport to the hotel and sometimes kill you.
“The Federal Government needs to do something. The person killed was a Federal Government delegate. The hotel in question must provide the footage for investigation. Everywhere in South Africa, they pursue Nigerians around like common criminals.
“We have businesses there the same way they have businesses here. Three former presidents of South Africa have lived in Lagos. If they have, they should treat us as friends.
“Let us invite their ambassador to Nigeria and our ambassador to South Africa. I don’t know when enough will be better. But enough is enough. This has to stop.”
Senate President Ahmad Lawan, in his remarks to the debate, while saying that “enough is enough”, noted that Nigeria cannot fold its hands and watch its citizens killed in other nations of the world.
“The trend must stop,” he said, adding: “This issue was discussed in the Eight Senate. We sent a delegation to the South African Parliament then. South African businesses flourish more here.
“South African people are safe here. There is no need to take the lives of Nigerians. We deserve some respect. Our relationship must be respected. We are a responsible country.
“We should not be taken for granted. We have provided leadership in Africa. We can’t take these killings anymore. We need to support the Executive to stop these killings.”
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