Xenophobia: Ex-BBA Star, Tayo Faniran Brutalized by S/African Police Narrates Ordeal, Calls for Love 

L-R: Tayo Faniran in a handshake with Hon. Abike Dabiri-Erewa, Chairman, Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NIDCOM).

By Gift Olivia Samuel, The Sight News

ABUJA—Former Big Brother Africa(BBA) housemate,Mr. Tayo Faniran has on Wednesday narrated his ordeal in the hands of  South African police.

Faniran who was brutalized few days ago by South African police, was present in Abuja, at a joint press conference on killings of Nigerians in South Africa addressed by Hon. Abike Dabiri-Erewa,  Chairman/CEO Nigerians in Diaspora Commission(NIDCOM).

Narrating his ordeal, he said that he missed his way and was trying to find the right road when he ran into the Police officers, adding that while reflecting in the cell, he wished he turned back but was consoled that something positive would come out of the whole incident.

According to him, “The positivity that I want out of this is the change. I have started a movement on #SayNoToXenophobia under the platform of Oduduwaclassics and I have been teaching people”. 

He further noted that there is no information in South Africa that urges people to say no to xenophobia and as such, he has decided not to back down.

The main reason xenophobia still exists in South Africa is because there is a lack of information.

Speaking further, he said, “I can assure the world that I have the right resources and with the right support, I can eradicate xenophobia. Maybe in two or three years but please put me to the test. I know everything about Xenophobia.

“I am not going to do it by war, anger or violence, or out of bitterness, I cannot teach people to love if I am demonstrating bitterness”.

The vengeance I want from what happened here, is to show love more to South Africans and to let them see why we should all come together.

He stated that Africa is his passion and the future of Africa lies in unity, and urged all African countries to come together, unite to make a better Africa.

Faniran thanked Nigerians and his South African family for standing up for him and showing him love, stating that not everyone in South Africa is in support of xenophobia.

“People who stood up for me were not only Nigerians and because of these people, I will hold on to my love for South Africa, and to make sure that instead of breaking the bridge between Nigeria and South African, I will continue to construct it”, he said.

While thanking Hon. Abike Dabiri-Erewa for her effort, he emphasized that the gathering is an opportunity for him to do more and carry the message of love out to the world, adding that xenophobia is not good for Nigeria and South Africa, as what affects one African country affects the rest.

Responding, Hon. Dabiri-Erewa stated that the South African police wanted to use him to make a statement, adding that if he hadn’t recorded the incident, the situation would have been different.

“Welcome home, we are proud of you and you are one of our very best and we like the way you comported yourself,” she said.

She further revealed that the issue is currently being investigated and they are working to see that the policemen in question are brought to book.

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