Nigerians protested outside a Shoprite outlet in Jakande in retaliation for xenophobic attacks on Nigerians living in South Africa.

A Nigerian mob laid siege on an outlet of Shoprite located inside Circle Mall in the Jakande area of Lagos State on Tuesday, September 3, 2019.

The violent demonstration was in reaction to xenophobic attacks on Nigerians living in South Africa over the past two days.

South African mobs launched attacks on foreigners, including Nigerians, and looted and burnt their places of business in suburbs of Johannesburg and surrounding areas on Sunday, September 1, 2019, and Monday, September 2.

Three people were reported to have been killed in a fire started by a mob on an abandoned building in the Jeppestown area of Johannesburg.

The attacks have angered many Nigerians who have called for a boycott of South African businesses, like Shoprite, operating in Nigeria.

Shoprite staff, customers as well as others in the mall were thrown into a state of panic when a group started disruptive activities, knocking items off shelves.

A swift reaction from police officers then forced the protesters out onto the streets where they were filmed burning tyres and disrupting activities on the Lekki-Epe Expressway. Many were also reported to have thrown stones at the mall.

Another group of protesters demonstrated peacefully at Ikeja City Mall, Ikeja, which also houses a Shoprite outlet.

5 killed in South African attacks

Nigerians have battled xenophobic attacks in South Africa for years, with at least 127 believed to have been killed over the past three years.

The South African Police Service (SAPS) disclosed on Tuesday that five people were killed in the recent spate of violence, although their nationalities were not revealed.

A total of 189 arrests have also been effected since Sunday for criminal acts including public violence, malicious damage to property, and theft. 

Businesses owned by Nigerians were looted and vandalised in recent attacks in South Africa [NAN]
Businesses owned by Nigerians were looted and vandalised in recent attacks in South Africa [NAN]

The Provincial Commissioner of Gauteng, Lieutenant General Elias Mawela, assured members of the public that no unlawful activities will be tolerated.

South Africa's President Cyril Ramaphosa has condemned the attacks and called for unity. 

"The people of our country want to live in harmony; whatever concerns or grievances we may have, we need to handle them in a democratic way. 

"There can be no justification for any South African to attack people from other countries," he said.

Nigeria's President Muhammadu Buhari has sent a special envoy to South Africa to express his displeasure with the fresh attacks.