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China pledges equal treatment for Nigerians, other Africans

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Chinese President, Xi Jinping

The People’s Republic of China has promised better, non-discriminatory treatment of Nigerians and other Africans following a formal protest by the Federal Government over the shabby treatment of Nigerians in Guangzhou.
Nigerians in china in a video which went viral recently alleged that Chinese authorities were maltreating them and evicting them from their homes and hotels, which exposed them to the hazards of the coronavirus pandemic.
But the Chinese Foreign Affairs Ministry at the weekend said the authorities of Guangdong were working to improve their working method.
The Foreign Ministry spokesperson, Zhao Lijian, in a statement on Sunday, stated that the provincial government would henceforth provide health management services without differentiation, designate hotels for the accommodation of foreigners required to undergo medical observation and adopt price adjustment for those in financial difficulties.
He noted that the authorities would also set up an effective communication mechanism with foreign consulates-general in Guangzhou and reject all racist and discriminatory remarks.
A viral video had shown some Nigerians in Guangzhou being evicted from their homes and chased down the street by Chinese policemen.
The Nigerians complained that they were placed under compulsory 14-day quarantine, adding that despite testing negative for COVID-19, the authorities insisted that the quarantine period would be extended by another two weeks, a directive they resisted.
The Chinese officials were also said to have confiscated the passports of the Nigerians.
A second viral video also showed a Nigerian diplomat berating a Chinese official over the incident.
The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama, consequently summoned the Chinese Ambassador to Nigeria, Dr Zhou Pingjian, over the maltreatment of Nigerians in China.
The ministry confirmed in a tweet last Thursday that Onyeama engaged with the envoy over the eviction and stigmatisation of Nigerians in his home country.
But Lijian in his statement said, “The Guangdong authorities attach great importance to some African countries’ concerns and are working promptly to improve their working method.
“The measures include: to provide health management services without differentiation, to designate hotels for the accommodation of foreigners required to undergo medical observation and adopt price adjustment for those in financial difficulties; to set up effective communication mechanism with foreign consulates-general in Guangzhou; and to reject all racist and discriminatory remarks.”

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