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5,500 Nigerians to be deported from Libya, Mali

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By Evelyn Usman

A total of 5,500 Nigerians are set to be deported from Mali and Libya, over various migration offences ranging from Human trafficking, smuggling of migrants, and non possession of valid travel documents.

The first batch of 250 Nigerians from Libya will arrive the country today.

An additional batch of 250 Nigerians would also be deported from same country next week.

Director-General of the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons, NAPTIP Julie Okah-Donli, made this disclosure yesterday, during her maiden visit at the agency’s zonal command in Lagos.

DEPORTED! Deportees from Libya on arrival at the Murtala Muhammed Airport, Ikeja, Lagos undergoing profiling yesterday. Photo by Lamidi Bamidele.

She revealed that 5,000 Nigerians, mainly victims of human trafficking, were awaiting evacuation back home from Mali.

Okah-Donli, who described the trend of deportation of Nigerians from different parts of the world in recent time as frightening, called for the need to change the tide by providing an attractive environment that would keep people gainfully employed.

She said: “Between February and April, this year, no fewer than 1,134 Nigerians were deported from different parts of the world for various offences.

Out of the number, 905 were deported from Libya in five batches, 115 from Italy in four batches, 41 from Mali; 26 from Burkina Faso; 14 from Ghana ; 22 from the United Arab Emirate; one from Cameroon; 8 from Cote-Ivore and two from Togo.”

Declaring total war against human traffickers and organisations covering for them, Okah-Donli said modalities had been put in place to nip activities of human traffickers in the bud, threatening also, that the agency had concluded plans to shut down illegal organisations which kept shelter for rescued human trafficking victims and missing persons, only to use the means to seek funds both at home and abroad.

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