In an interview with Osasu Igbinedion, host of The Osasu Show, Senior Special Assistant to the President on Foreign Affairs and Diaspora, Abike Dabiri-Erewa said that some politicians in South Africa are the ones instigating the xenophobic attacks in the country.
While admitting that Nigerians as well as other foreigners commit crime in South Africa, she said that should not be a reason to attack people who are doing their legitimate businesses.
“There are people who commit crime in South Africa, such people are in any country. If South Africa is fighting crime; let it fight crime, not fight brothers and sisters, who are legitimately working in South Africa.
Don’t forget that these attacks happened in the past. This is the seventh attack. The last one was in 2015… the King of Zulu made some remarks that were inciting, that led to the last attack.
This particular one, let’s look at the circumstances. Fine, there are economic issues everywhere in the world. Politicians are campaigning and telling their people, ‘you know what, drive these criminals away, they are taking your jobs, and they are taking your women too’.
They don’t say that openly, but there is this thing about it; even the women are not looking at us.
It is a wrong message and there has to be education, awareness, that it is not these immigrants that are taking your jobs. Look at the jobs they are doing; vulcanisers, mechanics, barbers, these are middle income jobs” Dabiri-Erewa said.
She called on multinationals such as DStv, Shoprite, and MTN, to lead the education and awareness campaign against xenophobia, adding that MTN should send text messages to people in South Africa and DStv should create jingles on why “xenophobia is bad”.