Immigration in the world has always been one of the veritable ways in which several nations of the world initiates and establish strong communications between one another, a nation no matter how sophisticated it might claim to be that refuses to open its doors to other nations of the world will definitely find it hard to sufficiently sustain its existence as it would devoid itself of the growth and development which comes with associating oneself or one’s nation with other nations of the world. There are several innovations and initiatives which are peculiar to certain nations of the world which can adopted by other nations of the world to boost its sustenance. There are certain goods and services which are peculiar to certain nations which can be sold on the international market that can be beneficiary to the nations involved.
In the same wise, in the business world, there is no illegalities attached to people living their nations for other nations to live and do business inasmuch as there is no abuse of the existing legal laws in those respective nations.
Countries like the United States of America, Canada and the United Arab Emirates has over the years benefitted immensely as a result of its stand in opening its borders to immigrants within the last decade. Although the united states of America have tightened its laws in restricting immigrants from entering the American soil.
The success of or the ability of immigrants to live and do business in other nations solely depends not just on the disposition of the countries to welcoming visitors but also the relationship between the nations involved. This is why nations engages each other in bilateral relationship to fosters good relationship and beneficial ones between one another.
However, for the Nigerian nation, its citizens in other nations of the world has not have the best of international experience in their sojourn in foreign lands. The stereotyped profile and identity that is attached to Nigerians in many parts of the world which has given them the identity of scammers and corrupts individuals which is as a result of the activities of just a few who has resorted to breaking laws, cutting illegal shortcuts to making money on foreign soils.
Last year the Nigerian government has to battle the challenge of xenophobia in south Africa. It was an ugly situation where various Nigerians as well as some other African countries were maltreated in South Africa. This saw to the death of many as well as the destruction of the properties of several Nigerians who were living in south Africa. Many Nigerians in South Africa were forced to close their businesses outfits and rum for their lives as their ventures were vandalized by the south African populace. The allegations levied against Nigerians and other African countries living the South Africa was that they were taking away labor from the indigenous people of South Africa.
This similar incident has begun to rear its ugly head in Ghana, a neighboring Nation to Nigeria. According to the media reports and attestations from the various Nigerians living in Ghana especially the traders that the Ghanaian populace has started to melt out unfavorable and ill treatments of the Nigerians living in Ghana.
It was recorded that some Ghanaians went out all against Nigerian traders beating them while they also destroyed their shoes as they told them to return back to their countries. The allegations levied against the Nigerians living in Ghana was that foreigners in the retail business were just selling their wares without paying taxes. They also accused Nigerian of selling substandard products described as a threat to consumers. Also they also claimed that many of the Nigerian traders do not patronize the products of the Ghanaians because they are considered too expensive
The Nigerians living in Ghana has as a result of this made several pleas to the federal government of Nigeria to save them from this disgrace and embarrassment as they are being made to face in Ghana. It would be recalled that the Nigerian embassy had its one of its buildings destroyed in Ghana, a move that many has condemned while the Ghanaian authorities have already apologized for this incidence.
The Nigerian government must as a matter of urgency revisit this ugly incident and must address it properly else the nation not only stand to losing its dignity on the international scene but also risk having its citizens been ridiculed on foreign soils.
There is a need for a peaceful dialogue between the two nations to sit down and carefully re-examined the details of its relationship. The treatment melted out to Nigerians in Ghana is totally uncalled for and unwarranted. The Ghanaian government not only has a duty to protect its citizens but also to protect its foreigners. In the cases whereby Nigerians did violate any of its laws, the destruction of their properties or maltreating them is not an option to be considered. They have every rights to be lawfully tried in a civic law court.
Adding to this, the Economic Community of west African states must step into this ugly situation and must call both nations to a peaceful dialogue. It’s important for both nations to keep a lid on this and carefully address these various irregularities as they have the potency of resulting to a seriously volatile situation.
Over the years the two nations have shared so many histories together, and the relationship which they have both built over these years must not be allowed to be truncated over issues like this. If there is anything needed by the two nations even at a stage like this when both nations are preparing for a post covid-19 reality, it is not that of conflict or strained relationship. It is one built on a positive synergy between the two nations that will see to it that there is a sustaining relationship between the two nations which will bring huge economics gains to both nations. Their respective government must advocate for peace and harmonious co-existence not just between fellow countrymen but also between the natives and the foreigners.
By Marcus Amudipe