Alwaght- US President Donald Trump’s insulting remark about “s---hole countries,” that targeted the African countries drew criticism of African governments.
Washington Post cited unnamed sources as saying that that Trump had referred to some African countries, as well as Haiti, El Salvador, Nicaragua, and Honduras , as “s---hole countries” during a discussion about protecting people from those nations as part of a bipartisan immigration deal.
When lawmakers brought up protecting immigration from Africa, and the countries of Haiti and El Salvador as part of a reform deal, Trump asked: “Why are we having all these people from shithole countries come here?” several sources briefed on the meeting told The Washington Post and other media.
Responding to the Trump’s remark on Friday, the African Union (AU) told AP it was “frankly alarmed” by the comment. “Given the historical reality of how many Africans arrived in the United States as slaves, this statement flies in the face of all accepted behavior and practice,” AU spokeswoman Ebba Kalondo said. “This is particularly surprising as the United States of America remains a global example of how migration gave birth to a nation built on strong values of diversity and opportunity.”
According to Russia Today, individual countries also chimed in, with Botswana releasing a statement that called the comment “highly irresponsible, reprehensible, and racist.” It said the country had summoned the US ambassador to “express its displeasure at the alleged utterances.”
“The government of Botswana is wondering why President Trump must use this descriptor and derogatory word when talking about countries with whom the US has had cordial and mutually beneficial bilateral relations for so many years,” the statement reads.
South Africa’s ruling African National Congress called the alleged remark “extremely offensive,” with the country’s deputy secretary-general pointing out that while the nation has its difficulties, the US “has millions of people out of work or without healthcare.” He went on to say that despite that fact, “we would not deign to make comments as derogatory.”
Uganda’s state minister for international relations, Henry Okello Oryen, called the comment “unfortunate and regrettable,” adding that he hopes African heads of state will respond during an African Union summit scheduled to take place later this month.
However, South Sudan was more restrained. “Unless it was specifically said about South Sudan, we have nothing to say,” government spokesman Ateny Wek Ateny told AP.
Trump’s insult angers media
Media outlets also jumped on board, with South African newspaper the Daily Maverick stating that “casual Friday at the White House is soon to include hoods and tiki torches at this rate,” in a reference to the Ku Klux Klan (KKK).
Some combined the derogatory remark with a dose of sarcasm. “Good morning from the greatest, most beautiful ‘s---hole country’ in the world!!!'” South African Broadcasting Corporation anchor Leanne Manas tweeted.
The US television program ‘The Daily Show’ responded to the remark by tweeting in reference to the show’s South African host: “As someone from South s---hole hole, Trevor is deeply offended by the president's remarks.”
Earlier on Friday, a spokesman for the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, Rupert Colville, called Trump’s comment “shocking and shameful,” adding that there was “no other word one can use but racist.”
It was not the first time that Trump has spoken negatively about Africa. In 2013, he tweeted that “every penny of the $7 billion going to Africa as per Obama will be stolen – corruption is rampant!”
While Trump in a Friday tweet rejected using the s---hole remark at the immigration meeting with lawmakers, saying “this was not the language used”, Republicans’ media Fox News confirmed that Trump has used the remark.
“The president was referring to people from Haiti, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Honduras and African countries in the temporary protected status program, a source in the meeting told Fox News.”