Libya Returns Another 164 Nigerians
Libyan authorities on Wednesday night deported 164 Nigerians who allegedly entered the North African country through illegal means.
The returnees were flown in a chartered plane from Libya which touched down at Murtala Muhammed International Airport in Lagos at 6:25 p.m.
Our correspondent gathered that the expatriates were held in various detention camps throughout Libya for nearly a year before being repatriated back to Nigeria. He reported that the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) assisted in their repatriation.
Among the returnees were 97 men, 53 women, 11 children, and 3 infants.
It was gathered that the migrants traveled to Libya in hopes of reaching Europe by crossing the Mediterranean Sea. Earlier this week, 34 migrants traveling in an overcrowded boat drowned while attempting to make the treacherous journey across the sea.
Our correspondent observed that the Nigerian returnees were emotional upon landing in their home country. Many knelt down and began to thank God for their safe return.
One returnee, who gave her name simply as Adesua, a native of Benin, Edo State, told our reporter that she was lured into the journey through an agent who promised to take her to Europe.
“Before I left Benin, the agent who came to pick me up said that he was taking me to Italy for improved living,” she said. “My parents consented to it, hoping that I would find myself in Europe, but I found myself in Libya. Even in Libya, the agent still promised to get us to Europe, but it didn’t work out.
“I have been in detention in Libya for close to a year, and when the opportunity came for me to return to Nigeria, I jumped at it. Libya was a hell and I won’t pray for my enemy to go through the bad experience I went through in that country.”
The returnees were profiled and processed by officials of the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) and other security agencies at the airport.
Nigerians return to Lagos from Libya
Sahara Reporters, New York