They have travelled hundreds of thousands of miles for a better life in South Africa. They thought the grass was greener on the other side.

They forgot to adhere to the rule of law in the rainbow nation.

They are rotting away in different jails across the country.

That is the fate of 400 Nigerians, according to Abdulrahman Dambazau who is Nigeria’s Interior Minister.

Dambazau made the disclosure at a joint news conference in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on the visit of Nigerian delegation to South Africa.

Dambazau and his Foreign Affairs counterpart, Geoffrey Onyeama had on Monday led a delegation to South Africa over the incessant xenophobic attacks.

He said he had a meeting with his counterpart, the Home Affairs Minister in South Africa and discussed general issues particularly on migration.

The minister said they also discussed reports of Nigerians involved in some criminal activities.

“These are in the minority because equally we have Nigerian professionals who are contributing positively to development of the economy of South Africa.

“However, that is not to say that they should fold their arms and not to do something about somebody involved in criminality.

“But in doing that, we emphasised that due processes of the law should be taken in terms of the assumption of innocence, being proven guilty and in terms of fair hearing.

“I understand that there are about 400 Nigerians who are in their prison for various offences”, he said.

The minister said their offences included prostitution and drug, among others.