- Nigerian senators asked the federal government to issue a travel advice to all Nigerians traveling to South Africa to be wary of incessant attacks.
The lawmakers said incessant attacks by armed gangs against Nigerians in South Africa called for the issuance of a travel advice. In most attacks, Nigerians have been dispossessed of their valuable or even killed.
Not long ago, prominent Nigerians, including the Chairman of Africa Business Roundtable, Alhaji Bamanga Tukur and two national assembly delegation to this year's Inter-Parliamentary Union conference were also robbed in their hotels in South Africa.
The motion, sponsored by Grace Folashade Bent and seconded by Umaru Dahiru, senators of Adamawa North and Sokoto South respectively, focused on reports of incessant attacks, intimidations and brutalization targeted at Nigerians resident in that country. Both Bent and Dahiru were victims of the recent robbery in South Africa.
The Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs was directed to gather more information on the matter and brief the chamber within two weeks on its findings.
Senator Bent said the attacks have embarrassed most Nigerian travellers to South Africa.
"Worse still, Nigerians are being painted as fraudsters and criminals forgetting that a sizeable percentage of Nigerians go about their businesses legitimately," she complained.
"We were alarmed that the situation has deteriorated to the extent that a week ago, the South African Minister for Interior and Security announced on air ordering the South African police to shoot the 'bastards' referring to the armed robbers," Senator Bent said, adding that "even the South African government is getting helpless about the situation."
Bent said Nigerians who travel with huge cash instead of credit cards have become easy victims of robbery attacks.
For senator Anthony Manzo of Taraba South, the motion was intended to ensure protection for Nigerians resident in South Africa instead of generating diplomatic row between South Africa and Nigeria.
However, Senator Smart Adeyemi of Kogi West blamed Nigerians for their involvement in criminal activities, including robbery rather than engage in legitimate business.
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