The Nigerian High Commission in Ghana is upset with the nature of reportage of crimes involving Nigerians which it says exhibits some form of xenophobia.
The High Commission in a statement said “xenophobic tendencies” had the potential to mar Ghana-Nigeria relations.
In the statement, Nigerian High Commissioner to Ghana, Ambassador Micheal Olufemi Abikoye, references reports involving Nigerians and criminal activity; including the recent kidnapping of two Canadians in Kumasi.
The involvement of Nigerians in high profile crimes in recent times is viewed as causing some resentment for Nigerians in Ghana.
“The Ghanaian Press, both print and electronic as well as social media seems to have enjoyed a field day in demonising Nigeria which for all intent and purposes, is seen as a fraternal brother to Ghana,” the statement notes.
The High Commission maintains that this line of reportage “has caused untold pains, agony as well as apprehension” to Nigerians in Ghana.
This has compelled it to “appeal to local traditional media and social media to be highly circumspect in such reportage.”
“The ongoing media trial of criminals which was now being turned into a media trial of Nigeria as a country, calls for moderation on the part of media practitioners in Ghana.”
An Association of Nigerians in Ghana also criticized the consistent singling out of Nigerians in criminal activities.
The association said the behaviour of the few Nigerians did not call for stereotyping of all Nigerian nationals.
Ogbonna Keyse, spokesperson for Nigerians in Diaspora said on Eyewitness News: “We are sad and worried because we know that the majority of us are not like that. Nigerians are not criminals. Nigerians are not kidnappers. Nigerians are not murderers. Nigerians are good people, hardworking people.”