NEMA receives 146 stranded Nigerians from Niger republic


The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) received a group of 146 stranded Nigerians who returned from Niamey, Niger Republic, on Wednesday. The returnees arrived at the Mallam Aminu Kano International Airport in Kano on a B737-400 SKY MALI Airline plane. The repatriation was carried out under a voluntary program facilitated by the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) to assist distressed individuals who had left Nigeria in search of better opportunities in Europe but were unable to sustain themselves abroad.

The group of returnees consisted of 56 adult males, 39 adult females, and 51 children, representing various states in Nigeria, including Katsina, Kano, Adamawa, Lagos, Imo, Enugu, and Edo, among others. Upon their arrival, the returnees will undergo a three-day training program aimed at equipping them with the skills and knowledge needed for self-sustainability. They will also receive seed capital to help them establish their own businesses and become self-reliant.

NEMA Coordinator, Dr. Nuraddeen Abdullahi, advised Nigerian youths to consider the ample opportunities available in Nigeria and avoid embarking on dangerous journeys abroad in search of greener pastures. He emphasized the need to travel legally and through proper channels to avoid falling victim to human trafficking and other forms of exploitation.

One of the returnees, Emeka Njoku from Imo State, shared his experience, revealing that he had traveled to Tunisia four months earlier in search of better prospects. However, he encountered numerous challenges and hardships and realized that Nigeria offers opportunities for growth and development. Njoku urged the government to create job opportunities and empower young people across the country.

The returnees expressed their gratitude to IOM and the Federal Government for their safe return. Representatives from organizations such as the Nigeria Red Cross, National Commission for Refugees, Migrants, and Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs), and the police were present at the airport to receive and support the returnees.

The repatriation of stranded Nigerians is a crucial step in ensuring their well-being and providing them with the opportunity to rebuild their lives. It highlights the importance of addressing the root causes of irregular migration and working towards creating a conducive environment for economic growth and development within the country. Through collaborative efforts between government agencies, international organizations, and civil society, steps can be taken to empower Nigerian youths, create job opportunities, and discourage dangerous journeys in search of elusive greener pastures.

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