Hypocrisy of selectivity and the damage over time
Just imagine! What has looting property at Shoprite by hoodlums and jobless lots founded by incompetency of government, stealing and burning of MTN offices got to do with solidarity against xenophobia? Is wrong. Yes South Africa might be having shares in those multi billion naira investments but Nigerians equally have very large shares in them and they provide tens of thousands of jobs for Nigerians, not South Africans, and we all know what it means not to have a job in Nigeria whenever we shout ‘insecurity in Nigeria’ at the top of our voices. Are we sure we are not killing ourselves the more in the name of solidarity against xenophobia?
If we are truthful, we should condemn xenophobia, campaign against it and put pressure on the governments to take measures and of course, the Nigerian government, to verify the claims of the SA govt of criminal activities perpetrated by Nigerians in SA and design a way of dealing with it, if at all the government can. It is a very serious claim if anyone understands what drug cartel means. It means there are both officials of government and security agents involved, it means threat to lives of innocent persons, it means having a very big drug market operating underground with its base in SA, it means severing diplomatic relations that would adversely affect economic activities.
Government must be forced to set up investigation to verify the truth and compensate the innocent persons affected and prosecute those found to be involved in crimes. But is wrong to be ‘monodirectional’ in our reaction to xenophobia in the name of ‘solidarity’ with Nigerians in SA and damn all the consequences, including exonerating criminals. Pressure must be put on SA to ensure that it reorient it’s people against xenophobia. Nigeria as a nation must stop disappointing the black race by playing the role of a dependable giant among the black nations.
But the government hardly has the morality to do that because there are a lot of people back here in Nigeria waiting to be compensated by the Nigerian government as ordered by courts of competent jurisdiction for damages it had caused them as a result of phobia it instigated against them.
We must not encourage criminal activities in the name of reprisal or in whatever form, after all we in Nigeria have been victims of phobia supported by government and our houses and property were equally looted with police protection, so we know what it means. Unfortunately it never became an issue beyond the pages of newspapers in the country. Even at present the government is instigating another phobia against us using the IG who is bent on acquiring our properties across the country claiming that we have been proscribed even as the UN is condemning its plot and the proscription.
As usual, the government’s people are waiting to loot our property as they have done in the past. It is in Nigeria that the Army killed 1000+ Shiites and gathered their copses for their hoodlums to scavenge. They stole personal possessions of those killed by the soldiers in Zaria and nothing happened and the soldiers were hailed as they chanted “no more Shi’ah”. We are direct victims of this.
I think one, among many other problems of Nigeria, is the hypocrisy of selectivity which also has to be dealt with as a long term solution to.
By Abdulmumin Giwa, Nigeria