The xenophobic attacks on foreigners and their businesses in South Africa have caused reprisal attacks across Nigeria and Zambia. Zambia and Nigeria citizens reacted by attacking South African businesses in their country. Whereas MTN Nigeria—the country’s largest telecommunications company was attacked in Nigeria, Shoprite— South African popular supermarket was attacked in both Nigeria and Zambia.
Multichoice— Africa’s leading entertainment company was attacked in Zambia and Nigeria as well. Based on these attacks, MTN Nigeria closed its offices across the country while Multichoice closed its outlets in Nigeria and Zambia.
The telecommunication company confirmed in a press release that it will be closing its offices across Nigeria via a press release posted on Wednesday the 4th of September 2019. MTN confirmed that its Nigerian subsidiary facilities and stakeholders have been the subject of attacks since Tuesday the 3rd of September, hence the shutdown. In a bid to take precautions, all MTN Nigeria outlets will be shut down until further notice.
Excerpts from MTN’s press release reads, “MTN condemns any acts of violence, prejudice, and xenophobia, we are engaging all relevant authorities in this regard and urge them to act swiftly to reduce tensions both in South Africa and Nigeria.”
According to Bloomberg, Multichoice sent them the press release via email and part of it read;
The situation is being closely managed by our teams across our operations. In the interest of safeguarding our customers and staff, we have taken the decision to close some of our offices in the following countries: Nigeria and Zambia until the situation is under control.
“MultiChoice is committed to uniting Africans through our programming and cultural initiatives. We advocate equality and condemn all forms of discrimination. The on-going violence in South Africa against foreign nationals is against the spirit of Africa, and counter-productive to the decades of work done by African leaders and well-meaning organizations to unite the continent.
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Xenophobic attacks in Gauteng South Africa which came to light on Sunday the 1st of September 2019, across social media handles revealed the gruesome attacks on foreign nationals by South African citizens. A report by the BBC revealed that the recent attacks began after South African truck drivers oppose the use of foreign drivers in their place. This led to the attacks on expatriates and looting of foreign businesses in South Africa. The Gauteng police confirmed that about 189 people were arrested for public violence, malicious damage to property and theft. They also confirmed five murders.
Other African countries did not take the recent attack on foreigners by South Africans lightly, as Zambian and Nigerian citizens retaliated by launching reprisal attacks on South African businesses. Multichoice, Pick and Pay, Shoprite and MTN outlets were attacked.
Nigerian celebrities like Burna Boy and Tiwa Savage also reacted to the attacks. While Burna Boy declared he would never travel to the country, Tiwa Savage pulled out of the DStv Delicious Festival scheduled to hold in October with DSTV in support of her actions.
We stand with Ms Tiwa Savage in condemning the violence against fellow Africans in South Africa. As a company, we advocate equality and embrace inclusivity and diversity. https://t.co/qKSipCR5GV https://t.co/bGZJiizv2q
— DStv (@DStv) September 4, 2019
Rwanda and Malawi pulled out of the World Economic Forum being held in South Africa, Zambia canceled their friendly match with South Africa and also stopped the airing of South African songs across their radio stations. The government of Nigeria has announced that it will boycott the WEF as they recalled their ambassador to South Africa. This move aligns with the defensive measures the government threatened to take against South Africa.
Where does these unrest leave the recently signed AFCTA and collaborations between South Africa and other African countries?
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