NIGERIA has refused to register her presence in the ‘World Economic Forum on Africa 2019’, in Cape Town, South Africa yesterday.
The boycott came following Xenophobic attacks on Nigerians doing their businesses in the rainbow country.
Other African countries, including Rwanda, Malawi, Congo and Niger are reported to have joined Nigeria in pulling out of the forum.
Nigerian government is presently exploring possible options including sanctions against the South African Government.
Meanwhile, pockets of reprisal attacks on some South African business establishments in Nigeria (Shoprites and MTN) have been carried out by aggrieved Nigerians as a warning to South African authorities to do the needful; while concerns mount on possible escalation if nothing urgent is done by the South African Government to stop killings of Nigerians in their land.
“President Muhammadu Buhari and Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo are currently working on modalities to resolving the Xenophobic issue with South Africa but they want everything done diplomatically,” a source credited to the presidency said.
Report says, the boycott of WEF is another strong statement to the South African Government and people indicating that President Muhammadu Buhari will not take further attacks on Nigerian citizens with a pinch of salt.
It will be recalled that the Foreign Affairs Minister, Mr. Onyeama met with the South African High Commissioner to Nigeria, Mr. Bobby Monroe, on Tuesday, to express his displeasure at the Xenophobic attacks and to also condemn the attacks.
“We have registered our strong protest to the government of South Africa but most importantly, we have put forward to the South African Government what we think will make a big difference,” he said after the two met in Abuja, Nigeria’s capital.
“One, with regards to compensation for those who have suffered losses and most importantly, a security proposal that we believe will safeguard the security of Nigerians in the future.
“We are hoping to see the possibility of sending some security agents, deploying them initially in the Nigerian High Commission, to work closely with the South African Police Force.”