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South African President Jacob Zuma has arranged a meeting with Nigerians and other African immigrants resident in the country.
The meeting is also expected to include nationals from Pakistan and Bangladesh.
In a statement issued on Wednesday and made available to our correspondent by the South African Presidency, President Zuma will have an audience with the nationals affected in the xenophobic attacks in the country.
The statement said, “President Zuma will meet with organisations representing foreign nationals. President Jacob Zuma will on Friday, meet with leaders of organisations representing foreign nationals resident in the country at the Sefako Makgatho Presidential Guest House in Pretoria.
“The President will meet with leaders representing foreign nationals from within Africa and also Pakistan and Bangladesh. The meeting is part of building lasting partnerships with stakeholders in the country to ensure that the shameful attacks on foreign nationals do not recur in the country. Foreign nationals have for years been successfully integrated into many communities in the country and government thus seeks to gain lessons from these successes.”
Meanwhile, the Campaign for Democracy has condemned South African citizens’ attacks on Nigerians and other foreigners in South Africa, adding that the country’s government waited too long to stop the violence.
In a statement issued on Wednesday, the President of the civil society group, Dr. Joe Okei-Odumakin, said there was widespread feeling that the South African government had been “far too slow” to respond to the violence, which has erupted intermittently in various cities over the past few years.
Odumakin stated that the xenophobic attack was fallout of failure of the government to empower the people with wider access to education so that they will qualify for the jobs that they say they deserve but are being taken by foreigners.