A former Minister of Education, Sr. Oby Ezekwesili, on Wednesday hit back at critics of her attendance at the World Economic Forum in South Africa.
Nigeria had announced her boycott of the September 4-6, 2019 event in response to the fresh xenophobic attacks carried out by South Africans against foreigners.
Nigeria also recalled its high commissioner to South Africa, Kabiru Yusuf, after a meeting between President Muhammadu Buhari and Vice President Yemi Osinbajo with Foreign Minister Geoffrey Onyeama in attendance.
Nigerian music star, Tiwa Savage, also withdrew from a DSTV concert scheduled for next week in South Africa, citing the savage attacks on Nigerians as her reason
Harsh criticism greeted Ezekwesili’s attendance at the summit but she hit back, saying she was at the event in her capacity as a private citizen.
She said: “Those who have genuine concerns about my being at @wef in South Africa, should please know that my decision to be here was thoroughly considered.
I am in South Africa leveraging my ensure that @GovernmentZA never again looks away while our citizens are attacked, maimed and killed.
“My Life Vision is to always stand for the weaker. This is a role I play within & without Nigeria. For me, the next three days in South Africa are programmed to achieve a set of specific action by the @GovernmentZA . Our Citizens’ preservation is what matters to me not the noise.
“Those of you who take delight in making ‘Politics’ of our Citizens’ Lives can carry on with your usual trade.
I stand strong on doing the things one can do to safeguard lives.
Citizens’ Lives are too sacred & important for me to be drawn into your latest ‘playground’. Never.”