Nigerian civil groups and citizens were outraged to find a big bronze statue of President Jacob Zuma towering over their heads in Imo State.
Zuma was on a visit to Nigeria at the weekend in a bid to “strengthen economic ties” and was awarded several honours. He also had road named after him.
The statue was unveiled by the state governor Rochas Okorocha.
A bronze statue of President Jacob Zuma unveiled and a road named after President Zuma as part of the honour by the Imo State in Nigeria pic.twitter.com/wSKrjg4w55
— PresidencyZA (@PresidencyZA) October 15, 2017
The statue was met with disapproval as Nigerians condemned Okorocha and expressed how unsafe they feel in SA due to xenophobic attacks.
But Zuma had a word or two about the xenophobic incidents.
“A South African must not kill a Nigerian and a Nigerian must also not kill a South African,” he said in a speech after the unveiling. He insisted that the xenophobia should cease.
— RottweiMan (@Maddict_raplord) October 17, 2017
I’m just embarrassed by the excesses of my governor, Rochas. He never let’s one ludicrous action to subside before the next. #Zumastatue
— Victor Olewunne (@victorofvista) October 16, 2017
Yu are honoring a criminal delinquent.783 criminal cases waiting for him. Please take him away not just his statue We begooooo #zumastatue
— Rainofblessings (@renette2013) October 16, 2017
Loooool my Nigerian people are overwhelmingly against the #ZumaStatue on the TL hahahaha
— Mpintshi Spiriti (@Who_is_Odwa) October 16, 2017
The statue is reported to have cost R20 million, prompting South Africans and Nigerians to ask why the money was not spent on bettering the lives of poor Nigerians.
It is alleged that government workers and pensioners have not been paid for months.