- Over 120 S’African Companies in Nigeria, Says FG
The Federal Government has said there are over 120 South African companies doing business in Nigeria.
It, therefore, stated that there was a need for Nigeria and South Africa to improve on their relationship, which had been tainted by reports of xenophobic attacks in South Africa.
The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, was quoted as saying this when the South African High Commissioner to Nigeria, Mr. Lulu Mnguni, paid him a courtesy visit in Abuja on Friday.
In a statement signed by the Special Adviser to the Minister, Segun Adeyemi, Mohammed said Nigerians and South Africans must be able to live in harmony.
Mohammed said, “For long, Nigerians have treated South Africans as their brothers and sisters. Over 120 South African companies, perhaps more than those of any other African country, are doing business in Nigeria; thousands of Nigerians regularly travel to South Africa for business and leisure, and – historically – Nigeria played a frontline role in helping to end the scourge of apartheid in South Africa.”
He said as part of efforts to end the ugly trend of xenophobia, the two countries would foster harmony through cultural diplomacy.
The minister said relevant agencies, including the National Council for Arts and Culture; the Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation; and the Nigerian Film Corporation, would soon embark on a series of activities in South Africa to strengthen the understanding between Nigerians and South Africans.
Mohammed said these activities would include joint musical concerts between Nigeria and South African artistes; co-production in the area of films; visit of popular Nollywood actors and actresses to South Africa as part of a Nigerian delegation going on a confidence-building trip; exhibitions featuring Nigerian delicacies to be entitled ‘’A Taste of Nigeria’’ and a town hall meeting for Nigerians resident in South Africa, with a view to encouraging dialogue on the way forward, especially in their relationship with their hosts.
In his remarks, the South African High Commissioner to Nigeria hailed Nigeria for its invaluable contribution to the liberation of South Africa from apartheid.
He said South Africa was committed to reciprocating the gesture by developing stronger ties with Nigeria.
“After sharing trenches, we are now a free people, thanks to your relentless fight side-by-side with us. When we got our freedom, we had to change and develop ways of building a new South Africa and New Nigeria and new Africa,” Mnguni said.