Any hope of justice for victims of xenophobic attacks?
By Femi Ogunshola, Nigeria News Agency .
In the heat of the 2019 xenophobic attacks in South Africa, in which over 600 Nigerians voluntarily indicated interest to return home, former President Olusegun Obasanjo, said the Nigerian government and other countries whose citizens were victims, should initiate actions against South Africa.
The former Nigerian leader said that the countries should come together and table the issue before the African Union, should the situation in South Africa persists.
Analysts agreed that South Africans viewed immigrants as burden on their economy, and also with erroneous impression that they were responsible for most crimes in South Africa.
Moved by the spate of attacks on Nigerians living in South Africa and their investments, Nigeria government sent special envoys to South Africa, to express the country’s sadness of the development.
As a way of assuaging the feelings of Nigeria, South African President, Cyril Ramaphosa, also sent special envoys to Nigeria and apologised over the xenophobic attacks.
But beyond the special envoys and the apology, what most Nigerians are demanding is justice for the victims.
Mr Omoriegbe Ogboro, Head of Legal Desk, Nigerian Union, South Africa, said most Nigerians are already coming together to institute legal action against the South Africa government for failing in its responsibility to protect Nigerians living in their country.
According to him, South Africa government should be held responsible for the xenophobic attacks against Nigerians living in their country, because the government failed to protect them and nationals of other African countries.
To him, the lawsuit will serve as deterrent to South Africans from further attacks because a warning signal would have been sent to the government and its citizens.
Ogboro said that the impact of the lawsuit against South Africa would ensure that when the government is paying for the xenophobic attacks, it will compel her to tighten up security in future to forestall further xenophobic attacks.
He decried the ingratitude of South Africa to Nigeria, stressing that Nigeria spent huge resources to ensure end of apartheid in South Africa.
Dr Kayode Ajulo, a human rights lawyer in his submission, noted that the xenophobic attacks in South Africa stem from the standpoint of misplaced anger, hatred on the part of South Africans towards other Africans and most especially Nigerians.
Ajulo regretted that South Africans failed to acquaint themselves with their not too long history of apartheid for which Nigeria played a key role in ending.
He said that the unexpected behaviour of South Africans that attacked Nigerians cannot be justified in the face of unprovoked attacks that Nigerians have been receiving in the hands of their South African counterparts.
Ajulo said that such attacks on citizens of other African countries were not reflective of the true spirit of Africanism.
He described the action as barbaric and capable of having a spill-over effect on the Africa Continental Free Trade Agreement, already in force.
Ajulo also urged the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr Abubakar Malami (SAN), to immediately start legal action against South Africa.
This according to him is predicated on Nigeria’s ratification of the Protocol to the African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights, which gave birth to the establishment of African Court on Human and Peoples Right which was signed on May 29, 2004.
He stated that the mandate of the African Court on Human and Peoples Right was to monitor respect for human rights on the African continent in line with the instruments.
“It is elementary principle of international law that a state is entitled to protect its subjects, when injured by acts contrary to international law committed by another state, from whom they have been unable to obtain diplomatic action or international judicial proceedings on behalf of its citizens.’’
Ajulo said that the Federal Government must toe the path of law and order to protect the rights of Nigerian citizens in South Africa affected by the xenophobic attacks in order to get justice for the gruesome violation of their fundamental rights.
According to him, the court is empowered to hear cases brought against African states for failure to respect human rights.
“ The court issues binding judgments in such cases and where violations are found, may award compensation and other remedies to victims,’’ he said.
Another legal practitioner, Mr Inibehe Effiong, regrettably that Nigeria was not among the nine countries in the continent that have ratified the declaration that permits non- governmental organisations and individuals to activate the jurisdiction of the African Court of Justice and Human Rights.
This according to him means that NGOs and individuals cannot institute legal proceedings against the Republic of South Africa, but only Nigeria whose citizens were affected can do so.
He however called on the Attorney General of the Federation, to institute legal action against South African government in view of the mindless attacks against her citizens living in the country.
Effiong noted that since the government of South Africa has now publicly declared that no compensation will be paid to victims of xenophobia, the Nigerian government should seek redress on behalf of Nigerians citizens affected by the xenophobic attacks in South Africa. (Features)
- Cambodia releases measures to curb, reduce air pollution
- MFM FC targets third away victory against Wikki Tourists
- Police confirm death a man in hotel
- 9ice marks 40th birthday in style
- EFCC arrests 6 over alleged internet fraud in Ilorin
- NUJ declares one week mourning for assassinated journalist
- Police nab 4 in connection with fight between two rival groups in Niger
- Onu solicits private sector support for methanol production in Nigeria
- N-Power: Plateau Govt. cautions citizens against fraudsters, fake portals
- NSE: Trading defies December inflation figure, index up 0.90%
- Gov. Oyetola wants experts in private sector to support Nigeria’s economy
- Commander charges 378 promoted FRSC officers to live above board
- Toyin Abraham eulogies husband on his birthday
- Akeredolu reiterates importance of NDDC forensic audit
- Benue govt. says negotiations on N30,000 minimum wage still ongoing
- PDP pledges to defend Nigeria democracy, institutions
- ‘Sugar Rush’ movie returns to cinema
- Don calls for Sharia Courts in South West
- 2 to die by hanging for murder in Osun
- FRSC tasks newly promoted officers on dedication, hard work
- We sag our trousers to keep in vogue – Youths
- Uzodinma appoints SSG, AG, CPS, others
- FRSC decorates 36 newly promoted officers in Bayelsa
- Abia Polytechnic to punish extortionists, says governing Council chairman
- Buhari departs Abuja for London ahead of UK-Africa Investment Summit
- Expert says vertical farming system preserves arable lands
- Ex-FUTO VC calls for upgrade of facilities in nation’s universities
- Lagos mass transit train: NRC to resume services soon – official
- NAMA begins calibration of landing aids at Lagos Airport
- Finance Act will reposition economy — Expert
- Xi meets Myanmar State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi
- Ore-Ijebu Ode-Sagamu accident preventable if… – FRSC Zonal Commander
- Insurgency: Nigeria takes delivery of fighter helicopters, gets more in February – AVM Abubakar
- Prices of local poultry produce will soon crash in spite of continued border closure – PAN
- Atiku proposes committee to review recent elections
- More funds, intervention will boost tourism sector, says NTDC boss
- Team Nigeria win 1 gold, 1 silver, 1 bronze medal at African Track Championship
- FG to boost national economy with methanol production
- Gowon Estate: Mosan/Okunola inaugurates new CDA officers, tasks them on devt
- Teenager docked for allegedly stealing conduit wire
- Expired products: NAFDAC advises Nigerians to be vigilant
- LASEMA rescues trapped victim from collapsed 3-storey building
- Enugu Judiciary honours former Chief Judge, late Justice Eze Ozobu
- Ekiti court dissolves 3-year-old marriage
- JOHESU branch lauds Obiano, CMD on improved welfare
- Sri Lanka lifts ban on drones
- LASCODA, LASPARK to plant 500,000 urban-friendly coconut seedlings
- Sen. Gyang lauds security agencies over aid workers’ release
- N166bn debt: Electricity Coy begins mass disconnection in 4 states
- Kwara Govt. expresses concern over condition of students hostels
- Regulating gas plants’ locations to reduce explosions
- Court affirms Uzo as Senator-elect Anambra South, dashes Uba’s hopes
- Plateau Nurses association urge Lalong to employ Nurse freed from Boko Haram captivity
- Police wades into crises rocking Gariki cattle market in Enugu
- Vaccination, best prevention against hepatitis–Virologist
- Farmer urges government to train, empower women in goat farming
- Niger Delta Ministry pledges to resume work on pending projects in Imo
- National Museum in Lagos recorded 39,061 visitors in 2019, says official
- Nigeria public debt stands at N26.2 trillion – DMO
- Global Fund: Health Minister Ehanire appointed Chair of coordinating mechanism
- FEATURE: Migration, governance and media reporting
- Ex-husband docked over alleged N250,000 pregnancy maintenance arrears
- Kwara Govt distributes computers to MDAs
- NAN gets new NUJ chairman
- Special polio immunisation: Enugu State Govt. targets 1 million children
- Alleged N3.6bn fraud: Judge’s absence stalls trial of ex NDDC boss
- We can perform better with supports from stakeholders, says ex-beauty queen
- Driver, 2 technicians arraigned over alleged stealing of goods worth N2.1m
- Plateau Govt. trains 128 health workers for effective delivery of mosquito treated nets
- Uzodinma is best thing to happen to Imo – Omegara
- Association says mining challenges can be overcome with political will
- FRSC condoles with Ore-Ijebu Ode-Sagamu accident victims
- Sultan says social-economic pressure causes farmer/herder crisis, not religion
- Blame INEC for Imo S/Court verdict – Esele
- Landlord docked for allegedly locking tenant out of apartment
- Brain Drain: Association calls for improved welfare for doctors
- Man in court over alleged car theft
- Bauchi Govt. to re-open abandoned museum to boost tourism
- Mechanic docked for allegedly stealing 2 goats
- Town Union to foot JAMB bill for 150 candidates of Anambra community
- Zulum appoints chairman, 12-member Borrno Healthcare Contributory Scheme
- Auto mechanic in court for allegedly defrauding customer of N130,000
- Adamawa to designate court for rape cases- Attorney General
- Teenager faces trial over alleged stealing, breach of peace
- Welder docked for allegedly stealing phone, N16,000 cash
- Kaduna govt. constitutes committee to collate data on Almajiris
- Buhari greets Chief Emeka Anyaoku at 87
- Scavenger docked over alleged theft of generator valued N25,000
- Man in court for allegedly beating wife to stupor
- U.S-based Imo indigenes react to Supreme Court verdict
- Plateau youths sack chairman over financial recklessness, abuse of office
- Commissioner seeks support for education in Kwara
- Akeredolu reconstitutes task force on farmers in govt’s forest reserves
- 4 men in court over alleged cultism
- Inflation rises to 11.98% in December–NBS
- Oyo farmers pray for early, stable rains
- Woman remanded for allegedly stabbing neighbour to death
- Immunisation: Nassarawa State Govt.engages traditional institution
- Man in court for allegedly stealing frozen chicken
- Wrestling Federation happy over Adekuoroye’s gold medal in Rome tournament
- FRSC decorates 34 newly-promoted officers in Anambra
- Akesan market: FG hands over building materials to Oyo govt.
- Fuel tanker burns in Onitsha again, no casualty – FRSC
- Exam malpractice: Kwara govt. to sanction delisted schools
- FG to site specialised agricultural market in Osun
- Obisesan assures aggrieved Oyo APC stakeholders of fairness
- Cash transfer : Beneficiaries in Oyo rural communities laud FG
- Comedy now one of Nigeria’s major exports – Shete
- Don urges lecturers to eschew acts inimical to university education
- FAAC: FG, states, LGs share N716.2bn for month of December
- VAT implementation takes effect Feb. 1– finance minister
- APGA leadership tussle: Justice has prevailed, says Njoku
- Gov. Abdulrazaq announces death of Oniyangi, prominent Kwara medical doctor
- Gov. Sule assures women of inclusive leadership
- Sagamu-Benin Expressway accident claims 9, three others injured
- Maritime key to economic development – Dangote
- Nigeria not ready for implementation of Eco Single Currency in 2020– Onyeama
- Gov. Wike approves payment of minimum wage to workers in Rivers
- Gunmen rob palm oil merchant of N1m in Umuahia
- NiMet predicts thunderstorms, haze condition for Friday
- Coker, ex-Queens’ College Principal’s death, big loss to education sector- Association
- NiMet to release 2020 rainfall prediction Jan. 21
- Police rescues 19 children from illegal orphanage in Kano
- FG set to replace fuel with Compressed Natural Gas to stop subsidy payment
- Sanwo-Olu reshuffles cabinet
- Hidden camera caught cleric defiling toddler – witness tells court
- FCT health workers resume emergency service
- British deputy high commissioner tasks Nigeria on quality investment
- EFCC to strengthen existing collaboration with NYSC
- Sylva optimistic PIB will be passed before May
- NGO identifies measures to curb drug abuse in Nigeria
- Gov’s wife urges parents, guardians to protect wards against child abuse
- FRSC promotes, decorates 35 officers
- Nasarawa Govt. to beef up security around unity schools
- Why I train health workers on skills acquisitions – MHWUN Chairman
- Stakeholders in Plateau meets over disasters management, mitigation
- Buhari attends UK-Africa investment summit in London
- Anambra Assembly confirms 18, steps down 3 LG transition committee chairmen
- FRSC Plateau Zonal Command charges newly-promoted 174 personnel on safety roads usage
- Nigerian Army to strengthen military cooperation with Egypt -Buratai
- Lagos Assembly passes ammended Property Land Use Charge Bill
- Security: We stand for community policing in Nasarawa -Gov. Sule
- Gov. AbdulRazaq harps on irregular migration
- NAFDAC to host international trade conference on food, drugs Feb.
- Synergise regional security outfits — Yoruba leaders
- Kogi explains water scarcity in Lokoja, environs
- Accreditation: NBTE visits Kwara for National Diploma courses
- Ensure sustainability of LASU , VC urges staffs, students
- Border Closure: Customs seizes N500m goods in Kwara
- Nyako: Court dismisses defence plea to compel EFCC to produce 3 witnesses for cross-examination
- Minister assures adequate protection for health workers
- NPFL: Rangers 2-1 win over Warri Wolves FC excites coach
- Finance Act: MAN DG seeks transitional guidelines for smooth conversion
- Yobe Council of Chiefs condemns attack on Emir of Potiskum
- Governor’s wife launches de-worming exercise in Enugu
- TCN confirms collapse of national grid
- NUJ National President tasks Gombe on security of journalists
- Finance Act will boost revenue generation – experts
- Lagos Assembly confirms Sanwo-Olu’s 11 nominees
- Rwanda on high alert as swarm of locusts invades regional countries
- ECOWAS tasks members on increased budget for IDPs, refugees’ education
- Yobe workers to receive minimum wage in February
- Lagos Govt inaugurates additional 10 rescue boats
- Edo APC governorship aspirants forge front against Obaseki
- Seed Council tasks companies, dealers, farmers on preservation
- NANS lauds Makinde over Olojede’s appointment as SA Student Affairs
- Onu says Nigeria to land in Space soon, harps on importance of Science, engineering
- Nigeria outlines 9 focal areas to guide its foreign policy in next 4 years
- I will not tolerate exam malpractice, Gov. AbdulRazaq warns
- NSCDC rescues 4 victims of human trafficking
- Man bags 1 month imprisonment for failing to present accused son in court
- Democracy: Nigeria has made substantial progress in 20 years – Lawan
- Nigeria, other west African countries kick against adoption of ‘Eco’ as regional currency
- Buhari nominates Kingsley Obiorah as CBN Deputy Governor
- Sports enthusiasts, associates bid ex-NOC chief fare well
- Lebanese minister denies ordering use of force against protesters, press
- NSE: Indices rebound by one per cent, amid interest in high capitalised stocks
- Three PDP chieftains cry foul over suspension from party in Nasarawa
- FRSC boss tasks promoted officers on service delivery
- Internet fraud: Man bags 1 year jail term, forfeits N29.2m to FG
- APC tasks Akande on reconciliation of aggrieved members
- Synergy with dev partners key to addressing housing deficit – Minister
- Ondo 2020: Akeredolu calls on APC support groups to work together
- Increase in teacher-pupil ratio `ll boost quality education- BMO
- Ogun moves to ensure uniformity in school curricula
- My husband is grossly irresponsible, divorce-seeking woman tells court
- Lagos Special Adviser gives scholarships to 200 Badagry natives
- Kano commitee on drugs intercepts 145 cartons of expired drugs
- 21 ships laden with petroleum products, food items arrive Lagos Ports — NPA
- Cotton: Ekiti Speaker assures farmers of support
- Lagos Agripreneurship programme aptitude test holds Jan. 20- Commissioner
- Woman, 52, remanded for allegedly stealing jewelleries in Osun
- Fire: NEMA warns Anambra traders against storage of combustible materials in shops
- Police to reward information on murdered journalist
- Buhari pays tributes to Bisi Akande at 81
- Cab operators in C’River get 90-day ultimatum to paint vehicles
- Ikorodu LG promises even distribution of projects
- Four docked for allegedly impersonating police
- 45m people across Southern Africa face hunger – UN
- Housewife drags ex-husband to court over N60,000 antenatal fees