With palpable anger still raging high over the Xenophobic attacks in South Africa, the National Working Committee (NWC) of the All Progressives Congress (APC) insists nationalising all South African companies in Nigeria is the Federal Government’s best option.
According to the ruling party’s National Chairman, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, such moves was necessary to demonstrate Nigeria’s anger over the seeming nonchalance of South African government concerning its citizens’ dastardly act.
“I think that in moments like this and to send strong message to the south African authority and their people, it is worth it for the Nigerian government to take over the remaining shares of MTN that are owned by south African so that MTN become fully Nigerian own”, the APC National Chairman said in Abuja on Thursday.
Speaking with journalists after the NWC meeting, Comrade Oshiomhole said: “We have discussed the attacks on foreigners in South Africa, particularly blacks who are predominantly Nigerians. Having listened to all the explanations from the authority in South Africa, we have come to the conclusion that these people are not being accused of being illegal immigrants nor are they involved in any illegal activities.
“Those who have business permits to set up businesses, whatever business they are involved in, they are operating within the letters of the law. Over the last one year, virtually every week, Nigerians are being wasted in one part of south Africa or the other.”
Warning that the beastly act by the South African cannot continue unchallenged, the APC Chairman said; “We know that the government has had conversation with the South African authority, drawing their attention to these and other abuses that Nigerians have been subjected to. But the escalation of the attack on foreigners which include Nigerians has reached a level that is no longer tolerable.
“At one time, people wonder whether these attacks have the backing of the south African government. What has been clear over the period is that the South African authority has not demonstrated sufficient commitment to bring these attacks to an end.”
He said it is quite disheartening that despite having many lives wasted in the senseless killings “not one South African is known to have been convicted and sentenced to prison for their role in attacking foreigners, killing them and looting their businesses.”
Comrade Oshiomhole, who condemned by compromising posture of the South African authorities, said; “We have been able to watch some of the comments on the recent attack, particularly the one that was made by a deputy Minister of Police Affair that not only endorse the killing and looting of foreign businesses, but refer to the activities of those foreigners who are into legitimate businesses as tantamount to economic sabotage.”
Painting a picture of Nigeria’s age-long hospitality towards people from the former apartheid enclave, Oshiomhole said; “As we speak, while South African government is envious of the small businesses which Nigerians are involved in South Africa, South African companies are making billions of dollars from Nigeria and repatriating same out of Nigeria.
“For example, MTN is making huge profit, including sometimes breaching our national laws. South Africans cannot be envious of small businesses over there while their business giants are smiling to their foreign banks where they keep profit that the repatriate from Nigeria.
“We are aware that not too long ago, MTN was enlisted in the stock exchange and some Nigerians have bought shares from MTN. I think that in moments like this and to send strong message to the south African authority and their people, it is worth it for the Nigerian government to take over the remaining shares of MTN that are owned by south African so that MTN become fully Nigerian own.
“While government think of how to deal with this, I think that in our individual capacities, this is the moment to show our commitment to our fellow citizens and show sympathy to those who have lost loved ones by boycotting South African goods and services, beginning with Nigerians refusing to use MTN services.”
Urging Nigerians to urgently adopt populace diplomacy against the South Africans, Comrade Oshiomhole said; “Happily, we have indigenous networks like Glo, ntel and 9 mobile. If Nigerians decides, at least for the next 30 days as a first step, to stop using MTN, they would have sent a clear message and pay befitting tribute to those whose lives have been wasted in South Africa. This will be more elegant rather than our people going to the streets and throwing stones against fellow Nigerians and a life being lost in the process.”
“This should also give us the opportunity to reflect on why we should allow DSTV continue to repatriate millions of dollars to South Africa every year arising from their activities in Nigeria”, the former Edo State Governor said.