- The EU has promised to financially assist Nigerian returnees from Lybia
- The international body revealed that so far it has helped in returning about 7,720 Nigerians to their various states of origin
- Ketil Karlsen, the union's ambassador and head of delegation to Nigeria, said that the union is working with the federal government to give the returnees a better life with skill acquisition training
The European Union (EU) has said that it has succeeded in securing the safe return of not less than 7,720 Nigerians who willingly accepted the opportunity to be taken back home in April, 2018 from Libya and other other countries.
Ketil Karlsen, the union's ambassador and head of delegation to Nigeria, revealed this at a media briefing on Wednesday, May 2 in Abuja, adding that an additional batch of 111 were set to arrive Lagos on Thursday, May 4, Premium Times reports.
Karlsen reported that about 50 per cent of the returnees were Edo state indigenes, while another 15 per cent were indigenes of Delta state.
He said those who accepted to travel home under the arrangement between the EU and the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) were guaranteed financial empowerment to restart their lives with some skill acquisition trainings.
Karlsen stated that the EU was engaging the federal government on how to curb the rise in irregular migration and human trafficking.
He said that part of the engagement was the signing of a common agreement on migration and mobility in 2016, while EU was funding programmes to help Nigeria better manage the menace of migration as well as address its root causes.
He added that the menace is a critical issue to the EU, and should be tackled as collectively, in view of the abuse of human rights and people in distress who need urgent help.
Karlsen remarked: “Some of the people who volunteered to come back home have difficulties coming back to face their families. Some support was packaged by EU to help their reintegration into society. Many of them are in need of assistance.”
Richard Yang, the deputy Head of the EU delegation, who was also at the briefing said the union would partner with IOM to lend support within a time space of four areas.
Yang said: “On their return, they will be granted some seed money of about €100. We (the EU) will counsel and identify the vulnerable people, particularly those psychologically affected as a result of being victims of human trafficking.
“We will identify individuals interested in setting up some businesses or go into some vocational activities, or other interested in coming together in cooperatives to set up businesses.
“Then, we will work with their state or local governments, along with agencies like National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) and the towns of their origin to ensure capacity building for them.”
Meanwhile, NAIJ.com reported that the third batch of 560 Nigerian returnees from Libya had arrived Port Harcourt.
Martins Ejike, the south-south zonal coordinator, National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), made this known to newsmen on Sunday, January 14, in Port Harcourt.
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