Shirley Ayorkor Botchway, Minister of Foreign Affairs
Some Ghanaians living in South Africa have expressed strong desire to return home following brutal xenophobic attacks on some African Nationals in that country, Donald, a Ghanaian in South Africa has said.
He told Francis Abban on the Morning Starr on Thursday, February 23, 2017 that “many of us are thinking of coming home.”
He lamented that they are living in fear and that their movements had been limited as a result. “We are in doors more because of the xenophobic attacks.”
He said attempts by them to reach the Ghanaian High Commission for succor had proven futile.
Reports of xenophobic attacks in South Africa have heightened over the last three days. Nigerians, Ghanaians and other African nationals have complained of rising violence against them.
The attackers accuse the foreigners of taking over their jobs and increasing crimes in their neighborhoods.
The attacks come just weeks after it was reported that Nigerian-owned properties— which some alleged were being used for drug dealing and trafficking – were torched in the Johannesburg suburb of Rosetenville, reported Okayafrica.com.
The invasion spread to Pretoria where foreign-owned shops were looted overnight on Monday, February 20, 2017.
We’re in charge
Meanwhile, the Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration Minister has indicated that the government is in control of the situation and that it is being monitored closely.
“We are monitoring the issue,” assured Shirley Ayorkor Botchway on Morning Starr Thursday, February 23, 2017.
The Ghanaian mission in Pretoria, she said visited shops owned by Ghanaians across the country on Wednesday, February 22, 2017 to ensure that they are safe.
“A lot of engagement has taken place between the mission and Ghanaians [and] we are closely monitoring the situation,” she lucidly reiterated.
SA High C’ssioner summoned
She said since the news of the attack broke, she had been in touch with the Ghanaian mission in South Africa and that they had assured “us of safety of our people.”
That notwithstanding, government of Ghana has summoned the South African High Commissioner to Ghana, Lulu Xingwana to get her assurance that “our nationals will be safe,” she added.
She said “I have invited the [High commissioner] to our Ministry to tell us what they are doing to protect our nationals. Whether or not our nationals are there legally or illegally does not matter now. Their safety is key now.”
South Africans need re-orientation
Appalled by the viciousness of her own country people, Lerato Letsoso, a South African Journalist with the Excellence in Broadcasting (EIB) Network in Ghana said the ‘typical’ South Africans need to be rehabilitated.
“I think South Africans should just be re-orientated as to how to deal with the fact that not them alone can be living in South Africa to enjoy what is there,” she said angrily, asking “Why? Why that entitlement? Why that…thoughts that nobody should come into [the country?”
What is happening in her country, she said, exposes the loopholes in the continents immigration system.