Reps wades into alleged discrimination against Nigerians in Abuja Chinese supermarket

Nigeria’s House of Representatives has expressed great concern over the recent allegations of discrimination against Nigerians at a supermarket owned by Chinese nationals in Abuja.

The House Committee on China/Nigeria Parliamentary Friendship Group, which is undertaking to intervene in the matter, called on Nigerians to remain calm, urging them to allow full fledged investigations into the allegation.

It was widely reported that a certain Chinese supermarket located at Umaru Yar’Adua road, within the China General Chamber of Commerce in Abuja, was operating a policy which discriminated against Nigerians from patronising the super store.

Although the Owners of the supermarket denied the allegations, the Nigerian Government, through the Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission, on Monday, sealed the supermarket.

While reacting on Wednesday, the Nigerian Parliament, in a statement jointly signed by Hon. Jaafaru Yakubu, Chairman, House Committee on China/Nigeria Parliamentary Friendship Group and the Spokesperson of the House, Hon. Akin Rotimi Jnr., condemned any form of discrimination.

They underscored the importance of the mutual relationship that exists between Nigeria and the Republic of China.

“As a committee tasked with fostering positive and mutually beneficial relations between Nigeria and China, we want to emphasize that such discriminatory practices, if substantiated by relevant authorities, go against the principles of friendship and cooperation that our two countries have worked hard to cultivate over the years.

“We believe in the importance of mutual respect and understanding between nations, and we condemn any form of discrimination or prejudice.

“Nigeria and China share a longstanding relationship characterized by mutual respect, cooperation, and friendship.

“Over the years, this relationship has been strengthened through various bilateral partnerships, economic collaborations, and cultural exchanges, benefiting both countries immensely.

“It is important to note that Nigeria and China have enjoyed fruitful collaborations in various sectors, including infrastructure development, trade, education, and healthcare.

“The ongoing partnership between our two countries has led to the completion of major projects, with many others ongoing.

“Furthermore, the Chinese Embassy in Nigeria continues to promote excellent China/Nigeria relations through socio-cultural exchanges and scholarships for many Nigerian students.

“These initiatives have played a significant role in enhancing mutual understanding and friendship between our two peoples”, the statement said.

The Parliament expressed commitment to conducting a thorough investigation into the matter, pledging to work diligently to gather all relevant information and ensure redress where necessary.

The House also urged “all parties involved to approach these issues with sensitivity and open-mindedness, and to work towards finding peaceful and constructive solutions”, saying, “it is crucial that we do not let isolated incidents tarnish the strong bonds of friendship that exist between Nigeria and China”.

To ensure that all Nigerians were treated justly, fairly and respectfully in any foreign establishment in Nigeria, the House of Representatives vowed to monitor the situation closely and work with relevant stakeholders.

The Green Chamber also assured Nigerians of continuous commitment to “promoting cultural exchange, economic cooperation, and mutual understanding between our two nations”.

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