The numerous mindless killings and blood letting of many Nigerians by South African nationals is tearing down the peaceful and smooth relationship existing between the both nations.
It was against this backdrop that theNigerian Foreign Minister Geoffrey Onyeama said his ministry had summoned the South African ambassador to discuss the matter.
Relations have been strained by accusations of South African xenophobia, with Nigerians alleging that Pretoria subjects them to harsh visa restrictions.
In the streets of Abuja, Nigerians expressed their anger over the attacks.
“They have their citizens here, right? They are not attacking them, nothing is happening to them, why are they attacking us over there? Why are they attacking us over there? Then come to the part of our government I think before this very time government ought to have taken a stand over that thing. They ought to have intervened, it shouldn’t have come this far,” said Abuja resident, Oladapo John.
At least 20 shops possibly belonging to immigrants were looted in South Africa’s capital on Tuesday (February 21), but police could not confirm if the attacks had deliberately targeted foreigners.
South Africa, with a population of about 50 million, is home to an estimated 5 million immigrants.
Some politicians and residents say some of the immigrants are in the country illegally and accuse them of committing crimes and taking over local shops and jobs.