By Lawani Mikairu
Global Initiative Against Illegal Migration, GIAIM, has launched a special scheme aimed at training and empowering hundreds of widows.
This is coming on the heels of the recent completion and launch of the non-government organisation’s multimillion naira skills acquisition and ICT centre in Edo State.
The latest scheme will lead to the training and empowerment of scores of widows in the first batch, which, according to the body, will begin in a couple of weeks.
The scheme is part of the body’s holistic approach to eradicate illegal migration and human trafficking across Nigeria.
According to GIAIM Executive Director, Mr Emmanuel Osime Obinyan, “our research has shown that young men and women engaging in illegal migration and human trafficking are mostly the children of widows.
“We, therefore, believe that if these widows are trained and empowered to start their own business, they will have the funds to take adequate care of their children and be fully responsible for their upkeep and welfare.
“When they are empowered and engaged in profitable ventures, the thought of selling their property to send their children to Europe illegally will not be there. Our aim is majorly to campaign against illegal migration with a view to discouraging the country’s work force from embarking on this high risk journey through the deserts and the Mediterranean Sea that ends with no success.”
“We also want to encourage the youths, parents and other core participants in the trade to be exposed to the reality of the adventure and seek the true alternative which will include valuable skill acquisition for the youths and empowerment of the parents and the need to fight corruption which is endemic. This will help propel youths to be self-reliant and gainfully employed as well as options of achieving legal migration.”
He also said GIAIM is seeking to interact and lobby members of the various state legislative assembly with a view to enacting a legislation to crimanalise and give consequences for violation of the law which will centre on illegal migration adding that parents who contribute to such movement should also face the consequences.
“We shall work closely with various skill acquisition centres centre and encourage a co-operative thrifts society with the sole aim of making capital at little or no interest available with a payment moratorium,” he added.