No fewer than 4,777 stranded Nigerians have been evacuated by the Federal Government between February and October 2023.
This is according to figures obtained from the National Emergency Management Agency and the International Organisation for Migration.
Specifically, 2,849 stranded Nigerians were evacuated from Sudan, 1,474 from Libya, 441 from the Niger Republic and 13 from Saudi Arabia in the last nine months.
Also, it was gathered that in October, 108 stranded Nigerians were evacuated from Libya; 155 were repatriated from Libya in September; in August, 459 Nigerians trapped in Libya were repatriated; in July, 205 stranded Nigerians were evacuated from Sudan; 340 stranded Nigerians from Sudan and Libya were received in June; while 2,678 were received in May from Sudan, Saudi-Arabia and Niger Republic
Another 403 stranded Nigerians were evacuated from Libya and Niger Republic in April, 279 stranded Nigerians were received in March from Libya and 150 were received in February from Niger Republic.
A retired ambassador, Rasheed Akinkuolie, who previously confided to Osun Defender, said insecurity and a high unemployment rate were making Nigerians leave the country by all possible means, noting that those who traveled and could not gain employment became a problem in a foreign land and were being evacuated back home by the Nigerian government.
Akinkuolie stated, “The security situation in Nigeria is one of the reasons people are leaving the country, especially young people. There is hardly any state in Nigeria that is safe. People cannot travel by road or train without being kidnapped.
“Unemployment among young people is another major problem irrespective of qualification. Doctors, engineers, university graduates in several disciplines, etc. migrate for better job opportunities abroad.”
On July 19, 2023, the Chairman, Nigerians in Diaspora Commission, Abike Dabiri-Erewa, stressed the need for Nigerians abroad to register on the agency’s Diaspora portal.
Dabiri-Erewa explained that the data derived from the portal would aid the Federal Government in quickly addressing any emergency bedeviling Nigerians in the diaspora.
Hafsoh Isiaq is a graduate of Linguistics. An avid writer committed to creative, high-quality research and news reportage. She has considerable experience in writing and reporting across a variety of platforms including print and online.