The South African police have promised to ensure the safety of Nigerians residing in South Africa, following the latest round of mob attacks that have left a Nigerian dead.
The police gave the assurance when the leadership of the Nigeria Union South Africa, led by its President, Mr Collins Mgbo, met stakeholders at Kimberley district in Northern Cape, South Africa, where a Nigerian died following a mob attack.
Mgbo said in a statement from Pretoria on Sunday that the meeting was attended by Brig. Rikhostso, Head of Kimberley Police Cluster, representatives of religious organisations, the host community and the South African widow of late Mr Nicholas John.
John’s widow was identified as Ms. Caroline Chikoma, who is currently nursing a four-month-old baby.
Mgbo said that the purpose of the meeting was to appeal to the police to make sure that justice was served in the tragic assault on John and for his killers to be brought to book.
“Secondly, the meeting was able to establish a structure or team, comprising the police, Nigerians, churches and other migrant community organisations.
“The responsibility of this group is to make sure that information is sent across to the police whenever there is a crisis so that the police can handle the matter quickly before it gets out of control.
“The police have promised the Nigerian community that they will make sure their lives and properties are protected,” Mgbo said.
The NUSA president advised Nigerians in Kimberly to go about their business and to make sure that they stayed away from illegal activities.
On February 17, the union’s leader announced the death of Nicholas John, attacks on foreigners by South African gangsters.
Mgbo had said in a statement identified John as an indigene of Ogun State in Southwestern Nigeria, who made his living selling cars in South Africa’s Kimberley district in the Northern.
The unionist disclosed also that John’s South African wife put to bed three months ago.
On the circumstances that led to John’s death on Feb. 12, the NUSA president said that on Feb. 11, John was attacked by a South African gang for allegedly buying a stolen laptop.
Mgbo said that the Nigerian was beaten alongside his friend, who the attackers believed was an accomplice, while the South African criminal who stole the laptop and sold it to John was left unharmed.
Other Nigerians at the scene called in an ambulance and took John to the intensive care unit of Kimberley Hospital, where they were informed by the medical doctor on duty that John’s brain was damaged and that he stood no chance of making it.
South Africa appears to have turned into a grave yard for young Nigerians, residing in that country to make their living.