The National Association of Liberation Tigers (NALT) has appealed to African leaders to urgently find solution to the xenophobic attacks in South Africa.
The association, in a statement by its Director, Mobiliser and Communications, Mr. Paschal Okeoma, in Enugu, on Wednesday, said the attacks could destabilise the continent, if not checked.
Some South African youths have recently engaged in killings and destruction of property of other African nationals in that country.
According to the group, “Xenophobic attacks have propensity to destabilise Africa, if allowed to continue as many Africa countries are already counting their losses.
“This further undermines the position of our continent as the new investment destination of the world and the emerging global power block.
“As one of the largest economy in the continent, the spate of xenophobic attacks will have direct consequences, not only on the diplomatic relationship between Nigeria and South Africa, but the entire integration agenda of the Africa Union,’’ he said.
NALT, being is a civil society of over 10,000 Nigerian citizens from different disciplines across the globe, therefore, condemn the sad turn of events in South Africa.
“This sad turn of event is a departure from the continent’s ongoing re-visioning of African integration as a panacea for African solutions to African problems.”
He recalled the days of apartheid struggle when African countries, led by Nigeria, ended the white supremacy regime in South Africa and institutionalised democratic principles, which the citizens of that country were enjoying today.
“It is, therefore, unfortunate that these achievements are being destroyed by the unwarranted attacks on Nigerians and other Africans by few youths with very poor memory of history.
“NALT warns that if these incidences continue unabated, there could be reprisal attacks with the tendency to destabilise the entire continent and further divide rather than unite us as a people,’’ he stated.
The association called on the South African government and other voices of reason in Africa to use their good offices to intervene in this matter to mitigate the spread of this action and likely reactions.
“We therefore welcome the efforts of religious leaders and other well-meaning actors in the continent, who are trying to end the needless attacks and ask all and sundry to follow suit.”
In the last 23 years, foreign nationals have been reportedly killed or maimed in xenophobic attacks in South Africa.
The attacks, which mostly resulted in the death of immigrants, first occurred in 1994, the year South Africa had its first multi-racial election, which ended apartheid rule. (NAN)