Nigeria’s Consul General in South Africa, Malik Abdul, has called on Nigerians in that country to exercise restraint, be cautious and as much as possible avoid high risk areas.
Abdul made the call in a statement made available to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Tuesday in Abuja while reacting to the ongoing violent protests in Johannesburg and Durban areas of South Africa.
He advised Nigerians to avoid being caught up in the violent protest, as the South African police and other law enforcement agencies were working hard to bring the situation under control.
“The Consulate General of Nigeria in Johannesburg is watching with concern the developments in the two Provinces of KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng, where criminal elements have hijacked the protest to free former President Jacob Zuma.
“According to reports, a considerable number of shops and establishments in Durban and Johannesburg, including those belonging to Nigerian nationals, have been burnt, looted and vandalised under the guise of protests.
“It is established that these criminal elements engage in these acts in furtherance of their interest to loot and vandalise private and public property, and not necessarily in relation to the Zuma case,” he said.
Abdul noted that the violence was condemnable and commiserated with all Nigerians in particular and others alike who might had suffered any form of loss due to the violent protest.
He added that lawful means should, however, be explored to seek redress.
He called upon relevant authorities to forestall the degeneration of the situation and to take proactive steps to prevent further loss of lives and property.
In another development, it was reported that the Consul General of Nigeria in South Africa took the first jab of COVID-19 vaccine on Sunday.
Abdul commended the effort of the South African Government in ensuring that the COVID vaccines were made available and easily accessible to the general public.
He advised Nigerians resident in South Africa to register and get vaccinated against COVID-19 and to disregard the fallacies being spread about the vaccine, saying they do not have any basis in science.
Abdul stressed that with the impact of COVID-19 on the economy and social cultural activities, it had become necessary for everyone to join the global fight against the pandemic in a bid to stop the virus in its track.