The International Organisation for Migration (IOM) and the Nigerian Embassy in Tripoli have facilitated the repatriation of 165 Nigerians voluntarily returned from Libya.
The returnees who arrived at the international wing of the Murtala Muhammed Airport, Lagos came aboard a chartered Nouvelair aircraft marked TS-INA.
The returnees who were made up of 97, males, 54 females, 11 children and three infants were received at the hajj/cargo terminal of the airport by officers of the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS), the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP), National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) and the Nigeria Police Force (NPF)
The director of NEMA, Alhaji Mustapha Maihaja said in an interview that the agency in collaboration with the IOM was working to ensure that Nigerians stranded in Libya are brought back home.
Maihaja who was represented by NEMA’s zonal coordinator, South West, Mr. Suleiman Yakubu, advised Nigerian youths to develop the mentality of staying back home and helping to build the country.
“We are here to ensure that they are well received. We feed them and give them money to enable them get back to their respective destinations.
“Those of them who have gone and come back will testify that it is better here especially now that we are in the era of the change mantra.
“A lot of initiatives have been put in place by the present administration to ensure that life is better in Nigeria,” he said.
Maihaja said various state governments, particularly Edo State had initiated skill acquisition schemes to help rehabilitate and reintegrate the returnees into the society.
Meanwhile, one of the returnees who identified herself as Ifueko said in an interview with Newsgazette that she became pregnant for one of the camp officials out of frustration.
Ifueko who sobbed profusely while narrating her ordeal said her destination was Europe but she ended up in Libya because she was afraid to cross the Mediterranean when heard about the death of so many who attempted to do so.
She said she and some other Nigerians were rounded up and detained in some camps across Libya.
“It got to a point when we were not fed in one of the camps. I had to survive. One thing led to another and I became pregnant for one of the camp officials. I thank God that I’m back to Nigeria alive. I going to pick up the bits and pieces of my life again, put the past behind and live all over again,” she said.