Posted by Charles lwuoha, Enugu | 5 September 2019 | 1,203 times
The South East Amalgamated Markets Traders Association (SEAMATA), an umbrella body of all traders in South-East Nigeria, has warned South Africa that she does not have the monopoly of violence while appealing to traders and Nigerians to shun reprisal attack on South-African businesses.
This was contained in a two-page document issued to newsmen in Enugu on Wednesday jointly signed by SEAMATA’s President-General, Chief Gozie Akudolu, and its Secretary-General, Mr Alex Okwudili, respectively.
The statement said that SEAMATA in their emergency general meeting deliberated on the xenophobic attack on Nigerian citizens in South Africa and with heavy and painful hearts condemned in very strongly terms the unprovoked attack.
“The Association is passionately appealing to traders and all Nigerians to please strongly resist this provocation and strong urge to engage in reprisal attack on South Africans and their businesses anywhere in the country.
“For in not engaging in reprisal attack, we shall not only be showing our maturity to the World but will be protecting the jobs of our teeming brothers and sisters that are employed by these South African business concerns,” it appealed.
The statement said that the association could not imagine that citizens of Nigeria that sacrificed so much in human, material and financial resources to bring down the Apartheid Regime in South Africa, could be “rewarded” with the unimaginable treatment.
The association lamented that for the South African security agents to watch their citizens kill and maim Nigerians, loot and burn down their shops and other businesses is unimaginable.
“That the South African security agents themselves indulge also in the actual killing of innocent Nigerians, the country that sacrificed so much in liberating and giving them the freedom they are enjoying today is not only embarrassing but a public exhibition of wickedness.
“It is most painful that South African citizens should display their short memory and knowledge of history so soon,” it said.
It also called for immediate and proper documentation of all Nigerian citizens killed in South Africa, all the shops and businesses and the value of goods looted, vandalized or set ablaze till date.
“The government of South Africa shall as a matter of urgency do enumeration and documentation for the South Africa’s proper and immediate compensation of these innocent Nigerians and their families.
“The government of South Africa should as a matter of State policy, provide with immediate effect, adequate security for Nigeria’s citizens in South Africa the way Nigerian government is protecting South African citizens and businesses here in Nigeria.”
SEAMATA reminded the government and people of South Africa, that no one stock of people or nation has the monopoly of violence, more so when they have giant business concerns even in our country, adding: “We therefore warn very seriously that enough is enough.”
The statement said that the association noted with regret that over 80 per cent of the victims of these unfortunate and avoidable attacks are members of the association that relocated their businesses to South Africa, for greener pastures.
It also appealed to the Federal Government to as a matter of urgency, take on the government of South Africa to stop giving only lip service to the security of lives and property of Nigerians in South Africa.
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