160 stranded Nigerians arrive from Libya

Afeez Hanafi                                                                             

A fresh batch of 160 stranded Nigerians has returned to the country following the harrowing experience they went through in their failed attempts to reach European countries through Libya.

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The returnees were received on Thursday night by the National Emergency Management Agency at the Cargo Wing of Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Ikeja, Lagos.

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Addressing the returnees, the Director General of NEMA, Mustapha Maihajja, urged them to put their experiences behind them and forge ahead, noting that they had opportunities to build a prosperous future for themselves.

The DG, who was represented by an official of the agency, Segun Afolayan, and other national stakeholders, enjoined the returnees to live a dignified life and make the country proud through innovations and creativity.

Maihajja said, “At the end of profiling, the breakdown of the returnees is seven female adults and 153 male adults.

“Federal and state governments as well as the development partners are working assiduously to create more conducive atmosphere where we can all prosper.”

Narrating his experience, one of the returnees, Kingsley Edward, a National Diploma holder, urged the Federal Government to create jobs, adding that he left Nigeria because of the lack of opportunities in the country.

He said, “I left Nigeria in August 2017. I decided to leave the country because there was no youth empowerment and I needed to find something doing. Even if you have your results in Nigeria, it is difficult to get a job if you don’t have someone to help you.

“I believed when I got to Europe I would get a job and would be able to further my education. I looked for an agent and we agreed on N500,000. On getting to Libya, he abandoned me.

“I worked for some months to raise money so that I could go to Europe. I looked for another agent and paid him 3,500 dinars (an equivalent of N350,000). The agent picked me and we went through the desert for five days. Everything about the journey had to do with dodging and hiding,” he said.

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