South African officials announced on Thursday, September 5, that the South African High Commission in Abuja and the South African Consulate General in Lagos had been temporarily closed as of Tuesday, September 3, following violent attacks on South African interests in Nigeria. South African companies MTN, Multichoice, and Shoprite have also closed their locations in Nigeria after being targeted by protests and attacks in retaliation to the spate of xenophobic violence ongoing in South Africa.
Further protests and acts of violence towards South African interests are possible in Nigeria over the coming days. A heightened security presence is to be expected in the vicinity of the South African diplomatic missions.
In retaliation to the spate of xenophobic violence ongoing in South Africa, notably targeting Nigerian immigrants, protesters on September 3 stormed a branch of the MTN South African telecommunications company in Lagos; other businesses owned by South Africans, such as malls, were also looted. One protester was reportedly killed.
Individuals in Abuja and Lagos should avoid all protests and demonstrations due to the risk of violence and adhere to any instructions issued by the local authorities and their home governments. South African citizens in Abuja and Lagos are advised to monitor the situation and use alternate methods of contacting the embassy if services are required. Those requiring services from or contact with the missions are invited to consult this website for the mission in Abuja, and this website for the mission in Lagos.
The security environment in Nigeria is complex and is particularly challenging in the northeast and extreme south of the country due to the presence of armed groups, high crime rates, and the risk of kidnapping. Professional security advice and support should be sought prior to travel to such areas.
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