The South African government is in constant communication with the Nigerian government, as calls for the release of the abducted girls in Nigeria continue, International Relations and Cooperation Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane said on Thursday.
Speaking at a media briefing, the minister described the kidnapping of the more than 200 girls by the Islamic militant group Boko-Haram as “unfortunate, heinous and unprecedented”.
“The South African government — first through Dirco [Department of International Relations and Cooperation] and the statement made by the Presidency two days after their abduction — has come out unequivocally condemning this heinous act of using girl children as weapons of some mysterious action by these abductors,” the minister said.
Minister Nkoana-Mashabane said South Africa joined the global community, firstly as an African country, to support of the efforts of the Nigerian government and its people.
“We are in constant communication with the Nigerian government through our High Commission in Nigeria and also the Nigerian High Commission here in South Africa.
“The responses we’ve been getting from the Nigerian government have been positive and we remain seized with the kind of support that the Nigerian government would be requesting from us,” said Minister Nkoana-Mashabane.
She also welcomed the initiatives of civil society across the world as well as those by other governments to pressure the abductors to release the girls.
“We welcome… equally our own [initiatives] in South Africa, particularly the students who have come out in support of the ‘bring back our girls campaign’,” she said.
Women, Children and People with Disabilities Minister Lulu Xingwana on Wednesday again called for the girls’ safe return.
“We believe that this is a serious violation of the human rights of these girls and a crime against humanity. We are calling on the whole world to stand up and fight against this horrific incident,” the minister said.
Yesterday marked exactly a month since the girls were kidnapped from a school in Chibok in north-eastern Borno state.
The minister urged South Africans to continue to stand in solidarity with the abducted school girls and their families and called for their immediate release, by using every avenue and platform available to say #BringBackOurGirls!
Source : SAnews.gov.za