By Lucy Osuizigbo
Awka – The Abundant Nigeria Renewal Party (ANRP) on Saturday commended President Muhammadu Buhari for visiting South Africa to dialogue and build harmonious relations between the two countries.
Mr Chris Emejuru, Foreign Minister of ANRP Shadow Government gave the commendation in a statement in Awka.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that President Buhari on Wednesday departed Abuja for Waterloof Air Force Base, Pretoria, to begin a three-day official visit to South Africa.
The visit comes against the background of recent xenophobic attacks, the evacuation of hundreds of Nigerians and the exchange of visits by special envoys of Presidents Buhari and Ramaphosa.
While in Pretoria, the Nigerian leader held a bilateral meeting with his South African counterpart, President Cyril Ramaphosa, to discuss the welfare of Nigerians.
The two African leaders also used the occasion to find common grounds for building harmonious relations among their respective citizens.
President Buhari also held a town hall meeting with Nigerians living in the country to share in their experiences.
Emejuru said that Nigeria and South Africa had shared significant relationship, which dated back decades to the era of Apartheid.
According to him, the partnership between the two countries is being threatened by the recent xenophobic attacks on Nigeria.
“Today, xenophobia threatens our strong partnership but we are confident that dialogue, not violence will rule the day.
“We at the ANRP commend President Buhari’s administration as well as the South African Government on this state visit as problems can be solved through cooperation and agreement.
“Our hope is for both countries to learn from these setbacks, which we believe will strengthen our resolve and create an example of goodwill throughout the African continent,” he said.