Friday, October 14, 2016 6:09 pm
The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) on Friday said that no fewer than 562 Nigerians have returned in batches from Libya in the last three months.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that this was contained in the data made available in Lagos by Mr Ekekiel Manzo, NEMA’s Information Officer.
Manzo said that 167 returned from Libya in June, 241 in August and 154 in October under the Assisted Voluntary Returnee initiative of the International Organisation for Migration (IOM).
He said that Dr Nahashon Thuo, the head of IOM Office in Lagos, said the returnees had opted to return voluntarily, adding that the Swedish and Swiss governments assisted in the successful process.
Manzo said that the returnees were received by officials of NEMA, the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS), the Police, the Air Force and the IOM on their arrival.
He said 154 returnees were received on Oct. 10 by the Director General of NEMA, Alhaji Muhammad Sidi, who was represented by the Director of Search and Rescue, Air Commodore Salisu Mohammed.
“ The returnees comprised 96 women and 58 men. There were nine pregnant women, three minors and three others with medical challenges,’’ he said.
Sidi, he said, warned Nigerians at the forum against travelling out of the country unless they were sure of legitimate and decent employment where they intended to go.
He said that one of the returnees, Miss Omogui Happiness, commended the Federal Government and IOM for facilitating her return after a harrowing experience in the quest to enter Europe through Libya.
Recounting her ordeal, she said it was by God’s grace that she survived a boat mishap on the Mediterranean sea after three nights of floating on the water.
”We ended up being detained for about four months before the opportunity for the voluntary return back home came our way,” she said. (NAN)