Paschal Emeka, Abuja
An investment and trade facilitation expert Engr. Ndipayya Batta has described the recent upsurge of xenophobic attacks against Nigerians and other African living in South Africa as well as hostile attitude of other African countries as detrimental and inimical to the African Continental Free Trade Agreement, AFCFTA.
Speaking to Daily Mail in an interview in Abuja, Engr. Battah who is head project MINE in the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment noted that with the Afrophobia in some parts of Africa implementing the AFCFTA will be an uphill task.
“They are making a mockery of the AFCFTA. Nigerian business men have at various times contended with all kinds of hostilities in several African countries. The AFCTA is designed to ensure free movement of goods and services, targeting a particular people or group of people will negatively affect the continent’s economy.
He decried subtle hostile policy of some African countries targeted against fellow Africans and warned that if the African Union did nothing to stem the tide, inter African trade and investment will suffer a huge set back.
While commending the federal government’s response to the latest xenophobic attacks as well as evacuation of those who want to return back to the country, Engr. Battah however proposed a stronger sanction against South African to serve as a deterrent to other African countries.