The leadership of the House of Representatives has expressed displeasure over the inhuman treatment meted out on some Nigerians by the Chinese authorities in Beijing.
The Speaker of the House, Rep. @femigbaja said at a meeting with the Chinese Ambassador to Nigeria, Zhou Pingjian, that the inhuman treatment on Nigerians in China must be addressed forthwith. He confronted the Ambassador with the protest video of the incidence where a Nigerian was seen challenging Chinese officials over the maltreatment.
At the meeting, which had in attendance the Minority Leader, Rep. @ndudi04 and Deputy Minority Leader, Rep. Toby Okechukwu, the Speaker said viral media reports/videos from Beijing showed Nigerians being forced out of their houses and hotels, rounded up and their passports seized by the Chinese police even after their initial 14 days quarantine period.
The Speaker said there should be an official explanation for treating Nigerians in such a manner.
“As a government, we will not allow Chinese or other nationals to be maltreated just as we will not allow Nigerians to be maltreated in other countries.
“The way you treat your citizens, we expect that’s how you’ll treat others. We will not tolerate our citizens breaking your laws, but the crime of one citizen cannot be used to stigmatize the whole country.
In his response, Ambassador Pingjian said though he has not been officially informed about the details of the incidence but that he would take it up with the home government.
“We take our relationship with Nigeria very seriously. Until we receive a full report from back home, I cannot act, but I can assure you it is not a policy issue.
“We treat everyone equally, but during the implementation of the #COVID-19 measures in China, it is possible for some incidents; all I do is to take it back home, today I will, ” he said.
The Speaker said the House will expect a feedback from the Ambassador by Tuesday.
“It is better we nip it in the bud so that it doesn’t escalate to another level. So, by Tuesday, if you have the information to give us, if steps have been taken, let’s talk about it and let’s see the way forward.”
The Speaker also sought to understand the specific mandate of the Chinese medical team that arrived Nigeria on Wednesday and if they are on quarantine.
The Ambassador said
“They are on 100 percent quarantine. The NCDC has been there twice; they have to follow the protocol. They are here to deliver medical supplies and on advisory role only, that is a prevention working group on Covid-19. They will do nothing like practicing as doctors,”.