South African-based model of Nigerian descent Tayo Faniran was assaulted by a couple of South African police men on Thursday 25 July, 2019. In an interview with me, he narrated how it all began. He was on his way to film an interview his crew and was stopped by the police for a search in his car. They did not find anything suspicious and wanted to seize his phone. Moreover, the police wanted him to get inside their van and lock him up. This led Tayo to go live on Instagram to show how he was being mistreated by the police.Just before he went live, one police man called a colleague to come to the scene. ”I wasn’t armed. I wasn’t violent or even rude to them. I was just being polite and diplomatic”, he said. ”But the moment they got there like this, the beating began. They started strangling me until I dropped my phone”, he added. ”They started beating me, you know, like an animal. They beat me so much”, he said emotionally. The police put in him the van and beat Tayo continuously while taking him to the police station. He was then taken to a cell. According to him, he was beaten again for some minutes and locked up. The model was eventually released around 11pm. On Friday morning, he went to court and was told that the case has been dismissed.
The live video went viral and reached the Nigerian government. According to him, they handled the issue well in conjunction with the Nigerian consulate, Consul-General, His Excellency Godwin A. Adams. Further more, the case is being handled legally, politically and socially by both parties. Tayo is not going to press charges against the police and said that he has forgiven them.
During the interview, he also mentioned the current state of how Nigerians are being treated there and explained the major reason for Xenophobia in South Africa.